INDIANAPOLIS -- The Indianapolis Colts will continue to tinker with their offensive line during the offseason to try to improve it.
But it doesn’t appear A.Q. Shipley is in their plans.
The Colts do not plan to tender Shipley, which means their Week 1 starter from last season will become a free agent.
The decision isn’t surprising when you look at how things shook out between the team and Shipley last season.
The Colts signed Shipley a week before their Week 1 matchup against Denver because Khaled Holmes, the projected starter entering the season was working his way back from a high-ankle sprain suffered on the first series of the preseason opener, and Jonotthan Harrison had a thumb injury. Shipley, who was released by Baltimore, was familiar with the Colts after spending the 2012 season with them.
Shipley started at center Weeks 1-4 before coach Chuck Pagano benched him in favor of Harrison without giving a reason after the Colts averaged 444 yards a game of total offense in those four games. Shipley started only one more game -- at guard in Week 17 at Tennessee -- the rest of the season. He saw action on special teams and on the offensive line, mainly at guard, in 10 other games.
The starting center position is Holmes' to lose next season after he started the final two regular-season games and all three playoff games. Harrison will be the backup. Guard Jack Mewhort can also play center.
The Colts are expected to have guards Donald Thomas and Hugh Thornton back after both suffered season-ending injuries last season. The Colts also signed former Canadian Football League guard Ben Heenan last month.