Reggie Wayne's future wasn't tied with Peyton Manning's after all.
Updated March 14, 2012 @ 4:10 a.m. ET
Wayne surprisingly re-signed with the Colts on Tuesday evening, according to NFL Network, agreeing to a three-year contract worth a maximum of $17.5 million.
Wayne had told people Tuesday that he wouldn't wait for Manning to decide on a destination, and he proved good to his word.
The way we see it
The Colts' re-signing of Wayne comes as quite a surprise for a team that has been unloading its veterans to rebuild under a new coaching staff and a new quarterback, presumably Stanford QB Andrew Luck. However, the 11-year veteran, ranked by PFW as the 26th-best free agent on the market, will provide a proven weapon for Luck, in what could be a rocky rookie season.
Like others, I was surprised the Colts re-signed a player who appeared to have mailed it in at times last season. Obviously they believe differently, and he's the only skill-position player with fantasy value left from the previous regime. Let's not forget this: He said he would still be willing to play for the Colts whether they were in rebuilding mode or not, and he kept his word.
He ended the 2012 campaign with 75-960-4 on 131 targets — a per-game average of 4.7 catches for 60 yards and 0.25 TDs on 8.2 targets in 16 games. That was his worst fantasy season since 2003, a span of eight seasons. While his fantasy value now has a ceiling, he's been a stalwart warrior, but at 34 years old he's lost a step and with a potential rookie coming in and starting, his upside is limited.
The best fantasy owners can hope for is for the Colts to bring in a veteran as a short-term transition between Peyton Manning and either Andrew Luck or Robert Griffin III. Wayne's value will be, at best, a No. 3 fantasy or flex-position receiver, but he is better-suited as roster depth.
— William Del Pilar