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INDIANAPOLIS – The offseason of retaining your own has led to another contract extension for a core member of the Colts.

DeForest Buckner will not play in a contract year this coming season, after inking a 2-year extension with the Colts on Monday, for reportedly $46 million. Bucker was due to make $22.75 million here in 2023, so this likely does very little to the Colts current cap situation.

Buckner, 30, has been an extremely durable and 3-down productive presence at defensive tackle in his 4 seasons in Indianapolis.

In trading the 13th overall pick for Buckner in 2020, Chris Ballard was a firm believer the Colts would be getting such a piece in the middle of their defensive line and the former top-10 pick has lived up to that.

“DeForest has been the epitome of what it means to be a Colt the last four years,” Ballard said in a team release. “As one of the premier defensive tackles in the league, he is a destructive force on our defensive line. DeForest is one of the pillars of our locker room. His hard work, consistency and approach to the game are vital to the success of our team. We are fortunate to have DeForest and the caliber of man he is representing our organization. I’m excited for him and his family on this much deserved contract extension.”

Questions on such an extension probably should surround the significant defensive tackle investment for Buckner and Grover Stewart, as both enter their 30s.

Hardly any teams in the NFL have such finances at defensive tackle, especially for guys that are unlikely to be core players past this contract, despite their impressive durability to this point.

Buckner, though, doesn’t look like a guy who will taper off much as he reaches the age of 30. The Oregon product has missed just 1 game in his 4 seasons with the Colts (due to COVID).

As 1 of the 4 Colts plastered on the side of Lucas Oil Stadium (Buckner, Jonathan Taylor, Quenton Nelson, Kenny Moore II), Buckner is thought of extremely highly by the Indy staff.

In this 2024 offseason, the Colts have now given major extensions to Buckner and Zaire Franklin, to go along with other multi-year re-signings of Michael Pittman Jr., Kenny Moore II and Stewart.

The Colts are back to work for the start of their offseason program this week.

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