Chris Ballard
Can we stop pretending Chris Ballard is a fantastic general manager? Blake Bortles and Ryan Tannehill have won the AFC South before Ballard. Let’s relax before you crown the man. (Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

One thing that is starting to get annoying on Twitter is the constant praise of Chris Ballard. God is it annoying. Do I think Ballard is better than that bum Ryan Gigson? DUH. Do I think Ballard is a good general manager? Probably, but time will tell. Is Ballard a fantastic general manager? My response to you would be based on what? Let’s stop pretending like the guy has accomplished something and let it play out.

Chris Ballard took over the Colts in 2017. First, let’s take a look at his draft classes.

Chris Ballard
(Football Reference)

Ballard got basically nothing out of his first draft. I love Malik Hooker but they declined his 5th year option. That’s admitting a mistake. Quincy Wilson was traded for sand paper. Tarrell Basham no longer on the roster. Outside of Marlon Mack, it was a wasted draft. Let’s be honest, you can find players like Marlon Mack every year. If that’s your best pick, you did a horrendous job. “fantastic” gm’s don’t miss like this.

Props for 2018. He did a great job. Ballard also did what 99 percent of GM’s would have done. Trade down with the Jets who wanted to move up for Sam Darnold. He came out of it with Quenton Nelson but was also in a no lose scenario. Whether it was Nelson or Roquan Smith, you couldn’t miss. Darius Leonard, great pick. Call it how it is. Ballard is 1 for 2 on draft days with the Colts.

I won’t judge 2018 too harshly yet after one year. For the most part, it’s a lot of players like Marvin Tell who never will make a significant impact. I thought his 2020 Draft was ok at best but I won’t judge that one either. The DeForest Buckner move was downright stupid, but I won’t judge it either yet.

What has Ballard accomplished? They went to the divisional round of the playoffs in 2018 based on the sole fact that once again Andrew Luck carried a sorry roster to the playoffs. Ballard inherited Luck. No props there.

The Colts went 7-9 in 2019 in a dog shit division without Luck. He’s had 3 years to build a good roster. Hasn’t done it. They had the same record as the Jets this year. The same team they “ripped off” in the draft two years prior. The same team that Darnold carries every Sunday or they have no chance to win. That was the Colts this year.

What’s Ballard done? What has this man won? He gave Brian Hoyer $12 million and then cut him a less than a year later. Smart GM’s aren’t that dumb. I can go up and down his transaction history and spot mistake after mistake. Ballard is in the same division as the tanking Jaguars, Ryan Tannehill Titans, and Lunatic Bill O’Brien Texans. There’s no excuses. Win the division.

Ballard has never won the AFC South. Ryan Tannehill has. Blake Bortles has. Zilch for Ballard. Let’s let this thing play out. Maybe Chris Ballard knows what he’s doing. To call Ballard a fantastic GM to this point is laughable. Let the guy win the division first.