Stephon Gilmore

AFC South Rumors: Pittman, Leonard, Texans

After trading away one half of their outstanding cornerback duo in Stephon Gilmore, the Colts expressed some interest in adding to the position room, according to Bobby Kownack of The team still has Isaiah Rodgers, who ranked as the NFL’s fifth-best cornerback last season, according to Pro Football Focus (subscription required), but across from him is Kenny Moore, who ranked at 96th.

Indianapolis is unlikely to use the No. 4 overall pick to select a cornerback in the draft, but there is likely to be some strong options at 35th overall at the front of the second round. Mississippi State’s Emmanuel Forbes and Georgia’s Kelee Ringo are projected to be borderline first-round players who could fall just outside. If not, Michigan’s DJ Turner and Utah’s Clark Phillips III are expected to last into Day 2.

Colts general manager Chris Ballard also mentioned free agency as a possible route to address the position, claiming that “there’s still some free agents out there, too, that could help…if need be.” He’s not wrong. Even if the Colts don’t want to reunite with Rock Ya-Sin, veterans Shaquill Griffin, Marcus Peters, and Ronald Darby are all still available on the free agent market.

Here are a few other rumors from around the AFC South:

  • After sitting out his entire rookie season with an Acute Promyelocytic Leukemia diagnosis, Texans wide receiver John Metchie is hoping to make his NFL debut in 2023. According to Texans TV host Drew Dougherty, Metchie has been involved since Houston began offseason conditioning earlier this month. They plan to continue to take it one day at a time, but it’s a promising sign for a young player who is overcoming tremendous adversity to get back to the football field.
  • The Colts have a few young offensive players’ contracts expiring after the 2023 season, and earlier this month, one of those players, wide receiver Michael Pittman spoke on the topic of an extension, according to Colts staff writer JJ Stankevitz. “I wouldn’t say it’s a goal,” Pittman said. “I think that happens naturally with performance. And if it doesn’t happen this year, that’s no big deal. I mean, it’ll happen eventually. I just kind of…leave that to my agent.”
  • Colts linebacker Shaquille Leonard missed making an All-Pro team for the first time in his career last season due to a combination of a concussion and the recurrence of a back injury that kept him out of 14 games. New head coach Shane Steichen gave a minor update on the situation, according to Nate Atkins of the Indianapolis Star, saying that Leonard is “progressing well,” but Steichen did not give a timetable for when Leonard might return. Indianapolis is staying optimistic but patient, something that is crucial when dealing with the tricky nature of back injuries.

Stephon Gilmore Requested Trade From Colts?

It came as something of a surprise when the Colts traded Stephon Gilmore to the Cowboys in March. After all, Indianapolis just signed the 2019 DPOY to a two-year, $20MM contract last year, and he was a rare bright spot in a generally disappointing 2022 season for the club.

Plus, while Gilmore’s age (he is entering his age-33 season) and contract status did not help matters, the Colts’ return of a fifth-round pick seemed underwhelming in light of Gilmore’s 2022 performance and overall track record. GM Chris Ballard later conceded that the trade was partly motivated by cap considerations, and we have since learned that Gilmore may have actually requested a trade out of Indianapolis.

Colts defensive lineman DeForest Buckner suggested as much, saying, “Gilly is at a different point in his career than I am. He just finished up Year 11, and I’m going into Year 9, so you know, if I was in his position, maybe I would have considered the same thing” (via Joel A. Erickson of the Indianapolis Star). “That’s the best decision that he made for him and his family, and I’m all for it.”

It seems, then, that Gilmore was the one who set the wheels of a trade in motion, and he did so in order to play for a team that has more of a chance to compete for a championship in 2023, and perhaps beyond. Gilmore does have a Super Bowl ring from his time with the Patriots, though it makes sense that he would want a shot at another title and does not see the Colts — who appear poised to start either a rookie or a bridge passer at quarterback in 2023 — as an immediate contender.

The Gilmore trade does leave Indianapolis rather thin at the CB position, the team’s reported optimism about its incumbents notwithstanding. If Ballard hits on his expected selection of a QB with his top choice in this month’s draft, The Colts could quickly reemerge as championship hopefuls. However, Buckner — who also lived through a rebuild during the early part of his career with the 49ers — does not appear willing to do the same in Indianapolis.

“I hate that word (rebuild),” Buckner said. “My rookie year in San Francisco, we went 2-14, the coach got fired, we brought in Kyle [Shanahan] and the majority of the roster was gone. Brought in new guys, and it took a couple of years. … We were building a team, a culture and all of that, but I was a young player, so I was able to grind through those tough years. … As you get older, rebuild’s definitely not a word you want to hear.”

Buckner, who recently agreed to a restructure to provide the Colts with 2023 cap relief, is under contract through 2024. However, he is scheduled to carry a $22.8MM cap number next year, and depending on what Indianapolis’ future looks like at the end of the upcoming season, he may not be particularly amenable to an extension that would smooth out that charge.

Colts To Retain C Ryan Kelly, CB Kenny Moore II

The Colts are planning to retain both center Ryan Kelly and cornerback Kenny Moore II, as Zak Keefer of The Athletic writes (subscription required). GM Chris Ballard recently fielded trade calls on both players, and a report last month indicated that he was actively shopping Kelly, but he clearly did not get an offer to his liking.

“They’re both great Colts, and we’re glad they’re here,” Ballard said. “When you’ve got a good football player that is a great person and a great fit, it makes it hard to move away from those guys.”

Kelly, who will turn 30 in May, was one of the primary culprits in the surprising regression that the Colts’ offensive line experienced in 2022. That group, widely considered one of the team’s greatest strengths, struggled last season, and Kelly himself earned middle-of-the-road grades from Pro Football Focus after surrendering five sacks, 25 total pressures, and failing to generate much push in the run game. Still, he earned Pro Bowl acclaim every year from 2019-21, and as Indianapolis could soon be deploying a rookie quarterback, having an accomplished player at the pivot makes sense.

Moore, who is entering his age-28 season, lobbied for a new contract last year. While the deal that he signed in 2019 set a record for slot corners, Moore argued that his pay should reflect the fact that slot defenders are really starting players in today’s pass-heavy league, and that his ability to line up outside the numbers, make tackles in space, and play behind the line of scrimmage should also be rewarded. Ultimately, the Colts did not make any adjustments to Moore’s contract, and Moore turned in perhaps the worst season of his career.

Although PFF continued to laud his work against the run, it assigned Moore a poor overall grade of 55.7. He failed to record an interception for the first time in his six professional seasons, and he yielded an unsightly quarterback rating of 117.7. In fairness, he was playing through a torn ligament in his left hand and also dealt with a right hand sprain before his season was cut short by an ankle injury, and he did not fit as well in defensive coordinator Gus Bradley‘s scheme as he had in the scheme utilized by former DC Matt Eberflus. Regardless of the reason, though, Moore’s performance took a lucrative new contract off the table for the time being, so his upcoming platform campaign will be especially critical for his future earning power.

Releasing Moore would create a cap savings of $7.6MM while leaving a minimal dead money charge of $500K, and a trade would remove the dead money hit completely. Still, after the Colts traded Stephon Gilmore and saw Brandon Facyson defect to the Raiders in free agency, the team’s cornerback depth is suspect. Per Joel A. Erickson of the Indianapolis Star, Ballard — who concedes the Gilmore deal was partially cap-driven — thinks highly of presumptive boundary starters Isaiah Rodgers and Dallis Flowers, but it makes sense that he would not want to thin the CB room even further by cutting ties with Moore (Twitter link).

Nonetheless, one would expect Ballard to attempt to shore up the position in the coming months, and the draft would be one way to do that. Likewise, new head coach Shane Steichen wants to add reinforcements to the offensive line, as Keefer tweets, and an heir apparent for Kelly could be in the cards. At present, 2022 UDFA Wesley French represents the Colts’ fallback option at center.

Cowboys Considered Darius Slay As Trade Option

The Cowboys made a splash in their secondary today when they acquired former Defensive Player of the Year Stephon Gilmore. Before they acquired the cornerback from the Colts, Dallas pondered making a call to a division rival.

[RELATED: Colts To Trade Stephon Gilmore To Cowboys]

While an initial report indicated the Cowboys discussed Darius Slay with the Eagles, these proceedings might not have progressed that far. ESPN’s Todd Archer clarifies on Twitter that the Eagles did not reach out to Dallas, so the Cowboys were clearly sniffing around at CB options. But the team had Slay on the radar. Jane Slater of the NFL Network tweets that the Cowboys indeed kicked around the idea of acquiring Slay.

While the Cowboys could theoretically carve out enough room to afford a pair of pricey cornerbacks, there’s a better chance the two potential moves were mutually exclusive, meaning Dallas preferred Gilmore.

Slay was recently granted permission to seek a trade out of Philly. It’s uncertain which side opted for a divorce; there were reports that the Eagles wanted to keep the cornerback around and that Slay wanted to stay in Philadelphia. The most likely explanation is that the Eagles wanted Slay to take a pay cut, and both sides may be exhausting their options before the player gives in to a reduced contract or is cut.

One year remains on Slay’s Eagles extension, a three-year pact worth $50MM. The 11th-year veteran is attached to a $17MM base salary in 2023 and a lofty $26.1MM cap number thanks to restructures in 2021 and 2022. No guaranteed money remains on the deal. The team could open up $17.5MM in cap space by making Slay a post-June 1 cut.

Addressing the trade topic on his latest podcast, Slay said he still wants to finish his career with the Eagles. That said, he confirmed he will continue his career elsewhere if that is what the Eagles end up deciding. The team locked up James Bradberry earlier today.

I know what’s going on. I hear the rumors; I hear everything,” Slay said (h/t NBC Sports Philadelphia). “I see everything all over the globe, all over the internet and I just want my fans to know Slay did not ask to be traded. But this is part of the business. There’s no bad blood against neither one of us, me or Howie [Roseman]. None of that. We all good, great understanding. It’s just the business part of it. A lot of guys go up for trades, you know, they got a lot of money involved in this situation so it’s nothing big, nothing too serious. It’s just part of the business, man.

I do want to finish my career as an Eagle but we’ll see. We be looking forward to it, man. Got time here. But best believe, I do want to be an Eagle. But if my job requires me to go elsewhere, then I’ll go.”

Since joining the Eagles in 2020, the cornerback has earned a pair of Pro Bowl nods. This past season, Slay finished with 55 tackles, 14 passes defended, and three interceptions. He ended up landing at 21st among 118 qualifying cornerbacks in 2022, per Pro Football Focus…a considerable drop from his fourth-place finish in 2021 but a significant jump from his grades in 2019 and 2020. For comparison’s sake, Gilmore finished this past season as PFF’s ninth-best CB.

Colts To Trade Stephon Gilmore To Cowboys

The Cowboys plan to pick up the second year of Stephon Gilmore‘s Colts-constructed contract. Indianapolis has agreed on a trade that will send the former Defensive Player of the Year to Dallas, Tom Pelissero and Ian Rapoport of reports (on Twitter).

In exchange, the Colts will receive a fifth-round Cowboys compensatory pick in this year’s draft. Gilmore is going into his age-33 season, but he played well in 2022. He will pair with Trevon Diggs in Dallas, which lost multiple cornerback regulars last season.

While Gilmore went through two rocky years following his dominant 2019 campaign, he bounced back with the Colts. Despite Indy’s chaotic season, Gilmore again proved to be a reliable defender. Pro Football Focus ranked the 6-foot-1 defender ninth among corners, and he allowed a 56.2% completion rate and 74.0 passer rating as the closest defender — both his best marks since that 2019 DPOY performance.

This will give the Cowboys a veteran boundary complement to Diggs, who lacked reliable presences opposite the risk-taking All-Pro to close last season. Both Anthony Brown and Jourdan Lewis suffered season-ending injuries, limiting the Cowboys’ upper-echelon defense in coverage. The team still has Lewis under contract, though Brown is a free agent, and plans to re-sign safety Donovan Wilson. Adding Gilmore will give the Cowboys a veteran-laden secondary without a top-tier contract on the books.

Gilmore angled for a new Patriots contract in 2021, doing so after the Pats gave him a one-year pay bump in 2020. But after the quadriceps injury that ended his ’20 campaign early, New England stood down. Gilmore landed on the Pats’ reserve/PUP list to start that season and never played another game with New England, which traded the former first-round pick to Carolina for a late-round selection. Gilmore underwent meniscus surgery during the 2022 offseason, Rapoport adds (on Twitter), and he looked closer to his peak form with the Colts.

Few modern corners have enjoyed seasons on the level of Gilmore’s 2019. The then-30-year-old outside corner rolled to Defensive Player of the Year acclaim during a season in which he intercepted six passes and limited quarterbacks to a collective 44.1 passer rating while in coverage. Gilmore enhanced his reputation considerably in New England, earning two first-team All-Pro nods and helping the team to its sixth Super Bowl title. The Cowboys will call on him to help them negotiate this decades-long hurdle.

After losing yet another divisional-round game, the Cowboys went to work creating cap space by restructuring the deals of Dak Prescott and Zack Martin. The Prescott restructure will provide the veteran QB with more leverage down the road, but it also equipped Jerry Jones’ team with more than $30MM in additional cap space.

One season remains on Gilmore’s two-year, $20MM deal. The Cowboys will take on the former Bills draftee’s $7.96MM salary, and they will count on the 12th-year veteran displaying the form he showed as a Colt last year. The Colts will take on $2MM in dead money by making this trade. They have moved on from multiple starting corners in recent years, trading Rock Ya-Sin to the Raiders in 2022 and now unloading the player they acquired to replace him. Slot staple Kenny Moore remains as Indianapolis’ top cornerback, but the team will need replacements on the outside.

AFC Rumors: Gilmore, Pryor, Petit-Frere, Wilson, Jaguars

Cornerback Stephon Gilmore is playing with his fourth team after a short stint in Carolina. He started in Buffalo before signing with the Patriots. New England traded the two-time All-Pro midseason for only a sixth-round draft pick in return. Gilmore was injured at the time, but the compensation the Patriots received never made a ton of sense. Recently, though, Gilmore elaborated on the situation that deteriorated in New England, according to Stephen Holder of ESPN.

At the peak of his career, Gilmore suffered a torn quadriceps in the 2020 season. The injury kept him on the Patriots’ reserve/physically unable to perform list to start the 2021 season and, during that time, the relationship between Gilmore and New England “reached a point of no return.”

“I just didn’t like how they handled my situation, my injury,” Gilmore told reporters. “The situation just, I don’t know, wasn’t right for both sides.”

Here are a few more rumors from around the AFC, starting with a couple position battle victories in the AFC South:

  • In a bit of a surprise decision, it appears that veteran offensive tackle Matt Pryor has won the left tackle job in Indianapolis over rookie third-round pick Bernhard Raimann, according to Joel A. Erickson of the Indianapolis Star. Pryor has only ever started one game at left tackle in the NFL and many expected the rookie out of Central Michigan to give him a strong run for the job. Erickson goes on to say that, should Pryor not perform up to expectations, there’s a strong chance that the starting job could slip out of his grasp.
  • A third-round rookie who did win the starting job is just across the division in Tennessee. Titans general manager Jon Robinson made it known last weekend that Ohio State rookie Nicholas Petit-Frere will start at right tackle to open the season, according to Kayla Anderson of WKRN News 2. Last year’s rookie offensive lineman Dillon Radunz failed to earn much of a role last season but, reportedly, did everything right this offseason. Still, Petit-Frere has effectively won the starting job and Radunz will continue to come off the bench in Year 2.
  • New Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson received an impressive contract extension this week reported as a five-year, $245MM deal. The new money on the contract extension was originally reported to be $49MM per year. Those original reports failed to take the league’s new 17th-week into account when calculating the new money, according to Mike Florio of NBC Sports. Wilson was entitled to two more years under his previous contract and the original new money reports included the Week 17 paychecks that really should’ve been included with the original contract. So, while still an extremely impressive payday for Wilson, his average new money is more like $48.52MM per year than $49MM.
  • The Jaguars are losing a member of their front office, according to Seth Walder of ESPN. Director of strategic research & development Momin Ghaffar is leaving the team for a job outside of football. In fact, the job is “outside of sports.” This isn’t a terrible surprise as the position was one of Jacksonville’s many roles that fuse business analytics with football analytics.

Contract Details: Gilmore, Cooks, Nelson, Smith, Bynes, Watkins

Here are some details on deals recently signed around the NFL:

  • Stephon Gilmore, CB (Colts): Two-year, $20MM. The deal includes $10.51MM guaranteed at signing and $14MM in overall guarantees. According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, Gilmore’s Year 1 payout will total $10.02MM.
  • Brandin Cooks, WR (Texans): Two-year, $39.76MM. The deal includes $36MM guaranteed at signing consisting of the $16MM signing bonus (applied over three years) and the first two years of base salary ($2MM in 2022 and $18MM in 2023), according to Aaron Wilson of Pro Football Network. Cooks will have a per game active bonus of $29,411 for a potential season total of $500,000 and will receive a roster bonus in 2024 of $3MM.
  • Steven Nelson, CB (Texans): Two-year, $9MM. The deal is worth up to $10MM, according to Wilson. It includes $4.5MM guaranteed at signing consisting of a $2MM signing bonus, the 2022 base salary of $1.75MM, and $750,000 of the 2023 base salary. Nelson will have a 2022 per game active bonus of $44,117 for a potential season total of $750,000 and a 2023 per game active bonus of $58,832 for a potential season total of $1MM. The deal includes an unspecified incentive worth $250,000 for the 2022 season.
  • Geno Smith, QB (Seahawks): One-year, $3.5MM. The deal is worth up to $7MM, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, with up to $3.5MM worth of incentives likely triggerable if he wins the starting job. The deal includes a guaranteed amount of $500,000.
  • Josh Bynes, LB (Ravens): One-year, $1.27MM. According to Jamison Hensley of ESPN, the deal includes $600,000 of guaranteed money consisting of the signing bonus worth $152,500 and $447,500 of the base salary (worth $1.12MM total).
  • Sammy Watkins, WR (Packers): One-year, $1.85MM. The deal includes a signing bonus of $350,000 and is worth up to $4MM, according to USA Today’s Ryan Wood, with incentives for playtime, catches, yards, and touchdowns. Watkins can earn an extra $150,000, $350,000, or $525,000 if he plays a snap count percentage of 55%, 60%, or 65%, respectively. He can earn an extra $150,000, $350,000, or $525,000 if he records a receptions total of 50, 60, or 70 catches, respectively. He can earn an extra $150,000, $350,000, or $525,000 if he has yardage totals of 550, 650, or 700, respectively. Lastly, Watkins can earn an extra $150,000, $350,000, or $575,000 if he catches 7, 8, or 9 touchdowns, respectively.

Eagles, 3 Other Playoff Teams Made Run At Gilmore

After discussing deals and meeting with several teams that made the playoffs in the 2021 NFL season, cornerback Stephon Gilmore ended up signing with a team that just missed the playoffs in Week 18 last season joining the Colts. Well, according to Josina Anderson of CBS Sports, the teams that pushed the hardest for the two-time All-Pro were playoff teams from last season: the Eagles, Raiders, Rams, and Bills. 

Philadelphia “made a hard play” for the ten-year veteran in their efforts to replace departing starter Steven Nelson. Nelson started alongside Darius Slay in the Eagles’ secondary last season before signing with Houston this offseason. Without Nelson, the Eagles will likely count on Avonte Maddox to take another step in his development after being a strong rotational player for the past four seasons. They may turn to the 2022 NFL Draft to address the position, but, currently sitting at 15th, they would likely miss out on the Draft’s two most exciting cornerback prospects: Cincinnati’s Ahmad Gardner and LSU’s Derek Stingley. Those two are even less likely to fall to Philadelphia with Baltimore sitting one spot in front of them wanting to add some depth to the position after spending most of last year without starters Marcus Peters and Marlon Humphrey.

Las Vegas had an impressive showing from their cornerback group last year despite losing Damon Arnette due to multiple lawsuits and behavioral issues and only seeing Trayvon Mullen play five games. The Raiders saw Casey Hayward, Nate Hobbs, and Brandon Facyson step up and contribute to a strong defense. With Hayward going to Atlanta and Facyson joining Gilmore in Indianapolis, the Raiders made addressing the cornerback position a priority. Luckily, despite missing out on Gilmore, the Raiders made strong additions acquiring Rock Ya-Sin from the Colts in exchange for Yannick Ngakoue and signing Anthony Averett, who started much of last year for the Ravens with Peters and Humphrey injured. Ya-Sin and Averett will join a hopefully full-health Mullen and Hobbs to round out a solid cornerback room.

The Rams pursued Gilmore in an attempt to replace departing starter Darious Williams after he signed with the Jaguars this offseason. Los Angeles returns star Jalen Ramsey and role players David Long and Dont’e Deayon, but they likely would’ve preferred to add another bona fide starter opposite Gilmore. Unlike the Eagles, the Rams probably won’t turn to the Draft to fill this role. They’ve made an example in the league trading draft capital for experienced veterans and won a Super Bowl doing so. Not only is it more on brand for them to seek a replacement through the trade and free agent markets, but, even if they wanted to use the Draft, they don’t have a selection in the Draft until the 104th pick.

The Bills would’ve liked to bring Gilmore back home to Buffalo after losing starter Levi Wallace to free agency. Buffalo brings back plenty of contributors from last year in Tre’Davious White, Taron Johnson, Dane Jackson, and Siran Neal, but bringing back Gilmore would’ve allowed them to slip him into the void left by Wallace without asking too much of Jackson or Neal to step up. The Bills could try to slot in another veteran free agent cornerback like Joe Haden, Kyle Fuller, or Chris Harris, or, with a later first-round pick, they could try to take a flyer on one of the Draft’s less elite corners like Washington’s Trent McDuffie or Florida’s Kaiir Elam.

The targeting of Gilmore by these playoff teams speaks to his current value in the NFL. It shows something that teams contending to win it all believe he can add value to their defense. There’s also something to be said that these teams usually have a nearly complete roster, seeking Gilmore to fill in one of their last positions of need. While Gilmore may not be able to anchor a defense by himself on a fledgling defense, he can make strong contributions when surrounded by talented teammates. In Indianapolis, he’ll team up with Kenny Moore and Facyson to lead an otherwise inexperienced group of corners.

Colts To Sign Stephon Gilmore

Just days after meeting with the Colts, cornerback Stephon Gilmore has decided to sign there. He is joining Indianapolis, as reported by NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero (Twitter link). 

ESPN’s Adam Schefter adds (on Twitter) that the deal is two years in length, and is worth $23MM, with $14MM guaranteed. It brings an end to a surprisingly lengthy free agent wait for the 31-year-old, given his pedigree. While he likely won’t reach the heights seen from the earlier parts of his All-Pro career, he demonstrated an ability to remain productive this past season.

Gilmore spent the first five seasons of his career with the Bills, but is most well-known for his time in New England. It was there that he earned four of his five Pro Bowls, his lone Super Bowl title and the Defensive Player of the Year award in 2019. However, his Patriots tenure came to an end in October when he was traded to the Panthers.

While his time as a Panther was still productive – he compiled two interceptions and a pair of pass deflections in eight games – the team turned its attention to re-signing fellow corner Donte Jackson this offseason. He, along with 2021 first-rounder Jaycee Horn and midseason acquisition C.J. Henderson will head their depth chart moving forward.

Gilmore met with a number of teams as the offseason progressed. The list of interested clubs included the Raiders, Chiefs, Rams and, most significantly, Colts. This signing represents another notable defensive addition, something general manager Chris Ballard recently signalled could be coming. Now, Gilmore will help replace Rock Ya-Sin, whom the team traded away to add Yannick Ngakoue. Those two, coupled with incumbents Darius Leonard and DeForest Buckner, should give the Colts an improved defense in 2022, as the look to contend in a highly-competitive AFC.

Colts Meet With CB Stephon Gilmore

Holding the second-most cap space in the NFL, the Colts are interested in one of the top free agents. They brought Stephon Gilmore in for a visit Wednesday, Ian Rapoport of tweets.

The Colts have a need at cornerback, having sent starter Rock Ya-Sin to the Raiders for Yannick Ngakoue at the start of free agency, and Gilmore is one of the more accomplished cover men over the past several years. According to Joel A. Erickson of the Indianapolis Star (on Twitter), today’s visit was more than the organization kicking the tires…the Colts have legitimate interest in Gilmore.

[RELATED: Rams Reach Out To Gilmore]

Gilmore, 31, has been connected to multiple contending teams. The Rams, Chiefs and Raiders have pursued the former Defensive Player of the Year. The Colts’ $21MM in cap space surpasses this trio, though the Chiefs are not far behind ($18MM-plus). The 10-year veteran has been patient, but his market did not take off early in free agency. Gilmore joins a few high-profile defenders in being unattached in mid-April.

Indianapolis still rosters standout slot defender Kenny Moore, but its 2021 outside starters (Ya-Sin and Xavier Rhodes) are not in the picture. This will be an area the Colts address in the draft, but Jim Irsay recently said the team was pursuing a big-name free agent. The 2019 Defensive Player of the Year and a two-time All-Pro while with New England, Gilmore has that pedigree.

The former first-round pick played just nine games last season, beginning the year late after a holdout and injury hiatus — stemming from his 2020 quadriceps injury and subsequent surgery — preceded a trade to the Panthers. Gilmore intercepted two passes with Carolina and went to the Pro Bowl as an alternate, but he allowed 68% of the passes thrown his way to be completed — well north of his two All-Pro Pats seasons. Still, the five-time Pro Bowler would be a starter-caliber addition to just about every secondary and potentially provide an impact on a short-term deal.