5 potential trade partners for Colts RB Marlon Mack

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The Indianapolis Colts are shopping for trade partners for running back Marlon Mack after the two sides agreed to seek a new home for the 25-year-old.

A fourth-round pick with the Colts in 2017, Mack was a solid starter for two seasons (2018-2019) before the team drafted Jonathan Taylor. Mack suffered a torn Achilles during the second quarter of the 2020 season opener.

He re-signed with the Colts this offseason on a one-year deal, but it’s clear there isn’t enough room for him to see consistent touches behind Taylor and Nyheim Hines.

The Colts likely wouldn’t net more than a late Day 3 pick. The trade deadline isn’t until Nov. 2 at 4:00 p.m. ET so the Colts have time to find him a new home.

Here are five potential partners the Colts could target in a trade for Mack:

San Francisco 49ers

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Probably the most likely partner for the Colts to target, Mack is a fantastic fit scheme-wise in Kyle Shanahan’s offense. Mack would be a nice piece to add to their diverse run scheme, and his speed would match what the 49ers look for in their running backs.

But perhaps the biggest reason the 49ers are the ideal trade partner is because of the injuries that hit the room. Starter Raheem Mostert suffered a season-ending injury in Week 1. His replacement, rookie Elijah Mitchell, exploded in following Mostert’s departure but then suffered a shoulder injury in Week 2 and was inactive for Week 3.

Fellow rookie third-round pick Trey Sermon, whom the 49ers traded up for, has struggled to establish himself as a viable option in the backfield despite the cupboard being bare. JaMycal Hasty is also dealing with a high-ankle sprain while Jeff Wilson is on the PUP list.

This trade almost makes too much sense for both sides.

New England Patriots

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The Patriots traded away former first-round running back Sony Michel just before the start of the season so it may seem odd for them to acquire Mack. However, he would be a solid insurance policy now that James White is likely to miss some significant time with a hip injury.

Mack probably wouldn’t take over the backfield from Damien Harris as fantasy football managers know all too well, Bill Belichick loves to rotate his running backs. Mack would be an upgrade over J.J. Taylor, Rhamondre Stevenson and Branden Bolden.

Baltimore Ravens

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This one might not be as likely because the Ravens have already made so many additions to the backfield this season. It all started with the torn ACL of J.K. Dobbins, who was expected to break out in his second season. Then Justice Hill tore his Achilles. It looked like Gus Edwards had the backfield to himself before tearing his ACL in practice leading up to Week 1.

Seriously, they might want to check the water in Baltimore.

The Ravens have been using a backfield rotation consisting of Ty’Son Williams, who has looked very solid as the lead back, and veteran Latavius Murray after he was cut by the New Orleans Saints. The Ravens also signed DeVonta Freeman and added Le’Veon Bell to the practice squad.

Mack probably wouldn’t take over from Williams, but he would be an upgrade over Freeman and probably Murray as well. Regardless, he’d be a solid addition to their rotation.

Seattle Seahawks

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The Seahawks backfield is led by one of the most physical running backs in the league in Chris Carson, who’s enjoying a solid start to the season. The depth behind him is suspect, though. Alex Collins appears to be the main backup while former first-round pick Rashaad Penny struggles to get on the field due to injuries.

Mack would be an upgrade over Travis Homer and DeeJay Dallas as well. Carson is a great lead back, and Mack wouldn’t cut into his shares too much, but his physical play can lead to injury at any point. Mack could help mitigate some of that risk.

Los Angeles Rams

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The Rams lost breakout candidate Cam Akers due to a torn Achilles. They are hoping to see the return of Darrell Henderson this week from the rib injury he suffered in Week 2 against the Colts. They also have Sony Michel after making that deal with the Patriots just before Week 1. It may be less likely that this deal gets done because the Rams seem comfortable rolling with Michel as the replacement.

However, Mack would be an upgrade over rookie Jake Funk, who is currently the third-string back whenever Henderson returns. The Rams are looking to make a playoff run already as one of the best teams in the NFC so instead of re-signing Todd Gurley or C.J. Anderson (just kidding…kind of) for that inevitable run, they could get Mack on the cheap.

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