How we graded Michael Pittman Jr. re-signing with the Colts

Michael Pittman Jr. and the Indianapolis Colts agreed to a three-year contract extension on Monday. The deal keeps Pittman in Indianapolis through 2026 after the Colts applied the franchise tag earlier in March ahead of free agency.

Per Jordan Schultz of Bleacher Report, the contract is worth up to $71.5 million with $46 million guaranteed. At full value, it would pay Pittman just under $24 million per year.

In 2023, Pittman tallied 1,152 yards, 109 receptions and four touchdowns. His 1100-plus yards were good for fourteenth in the NFL, and his 109 receptions placed him fourth among receivers.

One of his best performances of the season came against the Tennesee Titans in Week 13. Pittman ended his day with 11 receptions, 105 yards and a touchdown during Indy’s overtime win.

General manager Chris Ballard made it clear that Michael Pittman was a priority. Applying the franchise tag to Pittman while they actively continued negotiations was a good sign that the Colts were serious about retaining him.

Pittman has endured a lot. He’s had a different quarterback in every season he’s been with the Colts, and despite the quarterback carousel, he’s answered the call nearly every time the Colts have asked him to produce. Per PFF, since 2021, he’s been top-15 or higher in targets and receptions, which is a testament to his bell-cow work ethic.

If the Colts let Pittman truly hit the open market and walk away, it would have looked pretty awful on their brass. Pittman is a franchise staple, and you should pay not only for his production and reliability but also because Anthony Richardson needs weapons around him to succeed.

On the other hand, Pittman deserves stability at the quarterback position because he has yet to hit his full potential. If the Colts can unlock that, the possibilities are infinite.

Grade: A

Story originally appeared on Colts Wire