Jack Doyle Relieved To Still Be Playing For Colts

Intro: Jack Doyle is quite pleased to have the business side of the NFL behind him this offseason. Doyle talks going through free agency and re-signing with the Colts.

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INDIANAPOLIS – It should come as no surprise to anyone that Jack Doyle is no fan of the NFL's sometimes ugly business side.

Doyle just wrapped up his first NFL free agency and the emotions were what you would expect: anxious, curious and even a little worrisome.

But when Doyle finally put pen to paper on a new three-year contract Wednesday morning, relief set in.

"It's nice to have the process over with," Doyle said on Wednesday. 'The whole free agency is a crazy thing.

"I'm so excited to be back and can't wait to just get back to football."

The 26-year-old Doyle made sure to credit his wife for putting up with her stir crazy husband the past few days.

Those uneasy feelings started to subside on Tuesday morning, when new GM Chris Ballard called Doyle and negotiations picked up from there.

What Ballard has learned in his more than a month in Indianapolis is just how valuable Doyle is to the Colts.

If Ballard had any second thoughts about Doyle, Chuck Pagano was there to offer a strong endorsement.

"Jack is the epitome of a true professional," Pagano says. "His dedication, determination, and drive have made him the player he is today. A selfless teammate.

"We're truly excited that Jack will be suiting up for the Colts moving forward."

Doyle is coming off a 2016 campaign in which his role as a pass catcher exploded.

With Coby Fleener signing with the Saints last year, the thought was Doyle would see his numbers (35 catches for 209 yards and three touchdowns in his first three seasons) grow.

Instead, and somewhat surprising to Doyle, they skyrocketed (59 catches for 584 yards and five touchdowns in 2016).

"I'd be lying if I said I expected it to go the way it did," Doyle says of becoming the team's second leading receiver in 2016. "I think when Donte (Moncrief) got banged up (in Week Two) a little bit, it increased my role maybe more so.

"It was trying to take advantage of the opportunities, trying to help the team win. One thing that is my motivation is I always want to earn the respect of my teammates, always want them to trust me. That's something I try to do. When your number is called, you try and step up."

Of Doyle's productivity (the NFL's top tight end in 2016 from a catch percentage standpoint), availability (he's yet to miss an NFL game in four years) and flexibility (he's filled in roles on special teams, as a run blocker and a pass catcher), it's the last one he is most proud of.

"I've always taken a lot of pride in playing different positions, different roles, doing a bunch of different things," Doyle says. "I kind of got a knack for that in college, asked to do a lot of different things. That's something I've always tried to expand my game in doing a lot of those different roles."

Doyle's role as an offensive weapon for Andrew Luck is how the former undrafted tight end should be viewed going forward.

With Doyle back, the Colts have their entire starting skill group under contract for 2017.

Throw in an offensive line that has a five beginning to come together, Rob Chudzinski's second full season as offensive coordinator and No. 12 under center, Doyle feels the offense should be a top-10 unit.

"Absolutely. We have no excuses not to be," Doyle says of the Colts being one of the NFL's best offenses next season. "We have the pieces. Having Chud again is huge for us. Another year in that offense is going to be expanded even more and let us be able to do a lot more. I'm really excited to get into April and running plays.

"It's an exciting time and I'm pumped for the team to continue to grow."

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