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Colts Sign Free Agent Pass Rusher Justin Houston



Houston battled through a hamstring issue last season to remain a constant presence off the edge of the Kansas City defense. In 12 games played, he logged nine sacks and had a career-best five forced fumbles; he was especially dominant down the stretch, collecting six sacks and two forced fumbles over the final six games of the regular season.

Houston also had two sacks of quarterback Andrew Luck in the Chiefs' 31-13 victory over the Colts in their Divisional Round matchup at Arrowhead Stadium on Jan. 12.

In all, Houston has logged 381

total tackled (96 for a loss), 118 quarterback hits, four interceptions (one returned for a touchdown), 32 passes defensed, 10 fumble recoveries and caused one safety

Houston will line up at the defensive end for the first time in his career with the Colts, who are entering their second season utilizing a 4-3 base defense under coordinator Matt Eberflus. Last season, Indy logged 38 times as a team, tied for the 19th in the league, but only about half of those plays came off the edge.

Colts general manager Chris Ballard said earlier this offseason that he considered a pass rush to be primary need for the team to address this offseason. Enter Houston, a player with whom Ballard has plenty of familiarity with, served as the Chiefs' Director of Player Personnel (2013-14) and Director of Football Operations (2015-16) during four of Houston's eight seasons with the team. 19659002] "I think in this league, when you can have a dominant rusher that the other team really has, on Monday, come in and game plan for – and really more than one; to me, you want two or three along the front that can rush the pressure – that would be the No. Ballard said in January in an appearance on "The Dawn Show" on 1070 The Fan.

"Having a dominant, dominant edge rusher … they're not easy to find," Ballard fortsatte. “We've got to find him; when we'll find him, maybe the draft this year? Maybe free agency? We'll keep throwing darts to try to find the right traits in that rusher. ”


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