INDIANAPOLIS — Where will Frank Gore play in 2018 — and what will his role be on that team?
Those are the pressing questions about the future Hall of Fame running back, who has already expressed a desire to return for a 14th NFL season this year.
And after three years as the Indianapolis Colts' starting running back, Gore is set to become an unrestricted free agent when the NFL's new league year begins at 4 p.m. ET March 14.
Gore said he definitely wouldn't rule out a return to Indy in 2018, and respects the way general manager Chris Ballard is going about building the roster with the Colts. And, if quarterback Andrew Luck is back and fully healthy after missing the entire 2017 season after undergoing surgery to his throwing shoulder, then Gore could definitely picture himself wearing the horseshoe once again.
"I wish I would've played more with him, but I didn't," Gore said of Luck. "But if I had the chance to come back, if he's healthy, I'd probably come back again. But it's a business, and we'll see."
It's no secret that Gore is beloved across the league, and after getting oh-so-close to winning a Super Bowl title in 2013 with the San Francisco 49ers, who narrowly lost to the Baltimore Ravens, there would likely be plenty of contending teams who would express interest in bringing the NFL's fifth all-time-leading rusher on board.
But Gore is also a realist. He'll be 35 years old by the time the 2018 season rolls around, and while he remains confident he can still effectively do the job as an every-down back, he's also willing to explore accepting more of a backup role if it means he can play for a winner.
"Whatever role they want me to play — if it's a starter or coming in to help whatever back — I want to do it," Gore said. "But I want to be part of a team; I just don't want to be on the team, I want to help the team."
The Colts have an intriguing bunch for sure returning at the running back position in 2018. Marlon Mack showed several flashes during his rookie season — both as a runner and as a pass catcher — but the team is yet to see what he could do as its primary back. Veteran Robert Turbin, who has excelled in more of a third-down role for the Colts the past couple seasons, is also set to return this season.
Another young speedster, Josh Ferguson, is also under contract with the Colts in 2018.
2018 Colts Free Agent Watch:* *
- Wide receiver Kamar Aiken
- Inside linebacker Jon Bostic
- Safety Darius Butler
- Cornerback Pierre Desir
- Running back Frank Gore
- Cornerback Rashaan Melvin
- Guard Jack Mewhort
- Running back Christine Michael
- Outside linebacker Barkevious Mingo
- Wide receiver Donte Moncrief
- Center Mike Person
- Quarterback Scott Tolzien
- Kicker Adam Vinatieri
- Tight end Brandon Williams
23 Gore, Frank RB 5-9 212lbs 34yrs 13yrs Miami (FL)