Colts Release LB Akeem Ayers

The Colts have released veteran linebacker Akeem Ayers, a source tells Tom Pelissero of NFL Network (on Twitter). As a vested veteran, he will be a free agent and not subject to waivers.

Ayers was cut loose by the Rams this time last year, a surprise since he had started eleven games for the club in the previous season. Ayers didn’t have that large of a role with the Colts in 2016, but his release was not expected.

Ayers appeared in all 16 games for Indy last year, but did not make a start. He finished out with 18 tackles, two sacks, and one interception. Ayers graded out as the No. 54 edge defender in the NFL out of 110 qualified players, per Pro Football Focus’ metrics.

The Colts plan to start John Simon and Jabaal Sheard at the outside linebacker spots in their 3-4 scheme. Rookie Tarell Basham and free agent additions Barkevious Mingo and Sean Spence will serve as their backups.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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