The Colts have re-signed free agent safety Darius Butler to a one-year deal, the club announced today. The pact is worth $3MM, and could increase to $4.5MM via incentives, tweets Adam Schefter of ESPN.com.
Butler was PFR’s top remaining safety still on the board, and though he’s played cornerback in the past, Butler will in fact convert to safety full-time, Schefter confirms. The 30-year-old Butler had reiterated his desire to shift to the back end at the outset of free agency, and he’ll get his wish even though the Colts released a cornerback — Patrick Robinson — earlier this week.
Indianapolis has managed to retain Butler even though a report last week indicated the two parties had reached a contract impasse. While Butler wasn’t one of the first safeties to sign a new contract during the free agent period, other clubs had expressed interest. Before re-signing with the Colts, Butler took visits with both the Bears and Redskins.
Butler, a former second-round pick, had played cornerback for most of his career before transitioning to safety in the middle of last season. Pro Football Focus still graded Butler among corners in 2016, and he finished as the league’s No. 20 CB. In 12 appearances (seven starts), Butler put up 33 tackles, three interceptions, and seven passes defensed.
Heading into the offseason, Butler ranked as PFR’s No. 48 overall free agent.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.