Despite some popular belief, Castonzo was the only member of the offensive line that received a grade above 80 by PFF. Although he made some mistakes as a pass blocker, Castonzo excelled against the run. As for his value to the Colts, Castonzo is about to turn 30 in August and has two years remaining on his contract, for $10 million each. It might make no sense at all to state that the Colts should trade away their best lineman in a mediocre/horrible position group, but they should try and trade Castonzo while his value is still up, as who knows how much he has left in the tank.
For him, the Colts might be able to get a couple of mid-to-high draft picks, say for example, a third and a fourth, or perhaps even a second. That should be enough to satisfy Chris Ballard and make him pull the trigger. The Colts need a left tackle that performs better in the passing game, as the offense will surely rely much more on the passing game due to the return of star quarterback Andrew Luck and the potential (almost confirmed) hiring of New England’s OC Josh McDaniels. Castonzo was average in the passing game but he made way too many mistakes resulting in penalties or pressures.
The main potential landing spot for Castonzo and ideal trade target is the New England Patriots, as Nate Solder and Cameron Fleming are set to hit the open market, New England will have a glaring need for an established offensive tackle and Castonzo would provide them the perfect solution at a relatively low cost. If not, there are several other contenders that could use Castonzo either as a left tackle or on the right side of the line, for example the Vikings.
The Colts should invest their resources in trying to find a long term solution on the position, either via Free Agency or the Draft. The best option in a weak tackle Free Agency is Cameron Fleming, currently a New England Patriot. He is still young at 25 years old and he has performed specifically well in the passing game, being the best graded offensive linemen in this aspect in this year’s Free Agent class. He also would not cost the Colts much, as he was mostly a backup in New England, but he showed enough to prove he should get a chance to start. In order to sign him, the Colts would likely be required to offer him a contract in the range of $4 million per year; much less than the $10 million annually that Castonzo is being paid.
An intriguing potential draft target to replace Castonzo is Zachary Crabtree out of Oklahoma State, who is projected to go in the fourth round and has proven to be an above average pass blocker, but experts suggest he would be better suited for the right side or even guard. Another option could be Mike McGlinchey out of Notre Dame, but he would require the Colts to trade back into the first round as he is projected to go between the 20th and 30th spot in the draft.