His salary failed to reflect his skill sets, Thompson said. So, in 1976, he played out his option and tested the market. Others had done the same, but always re-signed with their old team. Thompson was the first to find a buyer. The Colts offered a $64,900 no-cut, no-trade contract to the 32-year-old defender, for whom they surrendered a third-round pick (per rules of the day). And history was made.