Colts 2019 Free Agent Watch: Defensive Lineman Margus Hunt
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INDIANAPOLIS – Most guys reaching the age of 30 and heading into their second NFL stop are not expected to find an overwhelming amount of success compared to their prior home.
But that is exactly what happened to Margus Hunt.
Drafted as a 25-year-old by the Bengals in the second round of the 2013 Draft, Hunt’s two NFL stops have a stark difference in production:
-With the Bengals (4 seasons): 44 games, 0 starts, 1.5 sacks, 4 TFLs
-With the Colts (2 seasons): 31 games, 20 starts, 6.0 sacks, 19 TFLs
Hunt calls his two-year signing with the Colts back in the 2017 offseason ‘amazing.’
“Last year, I thought I played at a very decent level, was able to contribute. Then this year, with this new defense in really, really getting after it, I took a leap,” Hunt says in summarizing his two seasons with the Colts.
“It’s very encouraging to me especially to be able to still make those strides at this point of my career.”
The strides that Hunt has clearly taken forward at this point of his career offers a very interesting case study for his upcoming free agency.
Most 32-year-old defensive linemen (Hunt turns 32 in July) have a bit of a red flag to them.
But Hunt is unique in that he’s still fairly young in his NFL life.
He’s only played 6 years in the NFL, at the age that most guys have been in the league around a decade. Hunt’s pre-NFL playing career had very limited football experience, as he grew up in Estonia and originally went to college in the United States for track and field reasons at SMU. So, the normal wear and tear isn’t as extensive on Hunt.
Chris Ballard has openly talked about needing to bolster the talent along Indy’s defensive front.
Bringing Hunt back on a short-term deal would make sense though, given his success with the Colts, versatility along the defensive line and Ballard’s desire to work through depth in the trenches.
Hunt has started games/played significant reps at all different positions along the defensive line.
Will that continue, in more of a scaled-back role, with the Colts?
The Colts entered the offseason with 15 unrestricted free agents.
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