BOCA RATON, Fla. – America's Independence could also hold a special meaning to Colts' fans very soon.
The Colts have a target date in mind for when they would like to have a second contract finalized with Andrew Luck.
Although there's no hard deadline on the horizon for the deal to get done, Jim Irsay pointed to July 4th as a reasonable expectation for completion.
"I don't think there's urgency, but there is a will on both sides to try and get something done instead of waiting and end up having to do it after next year," Irsay said at the NFL's Annual Meetings. "That could happen, but that's not the end of the world by any stretch because we are going to get it done. I think we both realize that it could be beneficial to help us plan for the rest of this decade and that sort of thing, if we get that contract done (this offseason)."
Luck currently enters 2016 playing on the fifth-year option of his rookie deal.
If contract talks linger into 2017, the Colts could apply the franchise tag to have Luck secured for a sixth NFL season.
That isn't expected though, with the configuration of such a deal being a major factor in how the Colts can operate going forward.
"We know he's an outstanding player at the position of quarterback and that sort of thing," Irsay said. "We also know we have to be able to field a team around him. We have to be very thoughtful about how we structure the contract, just not the numbers, but how we structure. The key is going to be having guys that come in and contribute and not have a lot of cap space that limits us so much.
"We are working on (the contract) and we have a great relationship."
The health of Luck was also a popular topic of the Colts franchise quarterback at this week's Annual Meetings.
After missing nine games last season due to shoulder, abdominal and kidney injuries, Luck is expected to be ready when the team begins its offseason program on April 18.
And that is *the *news for a player Irsay believes should be challenging for MVP awards.
"(Luck's) completely healthy," Irsay said.
"I don't have any (injury) concerns. I've talked to the kidney doctor and that sort of thing in terms of healing. There is nothing from the injuries that's going to be a lingering aspect."