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INDIANAPOLIS – Denico Autry might just have the title as Chris Ballard’s best free agent signing.

On the first day of free agency in 2018, the one ‘splash’ the Colts made was signing Denico Autry, as they began a serious rebuild to their 4-3 defense.

Autry, a 2014 undrafted free agent, had put up 10.5 sacks in 4 seasons with the Raiders and certainly wasn’t qualifying as a headline name to have tons of suitors.

The Colts gave Autry a 3-year, $17.8 million deal.

In return, Autry has been a productive and versatile part of a defensive line that has seen turnover all around him.

Lining up at both defensive tackle and defensive end, Autry has complied 20 sacks, 32 quarterback hits and 26 tackles for loss in 40 games (38 starts).

Will Autry, who turns 31 in July, earn a second contract in Indy?

Along with Autry, Justin Houston is another starting defensive lineman heading for free agency north of 30 years old.

The Colts have often lauded the toughness of Autry.

His versatility, particularly on game day, is another aspect to Autry that makes him attractive to re-sign.

While Autry’s age isn’t in his favor, he brings several key ingredients to creating a defensive line with quality depth.

Will Ballard’s best free agent signing to date get another deal in Indy?

2021 Colts Free Agent Watches

Quarterback Jacoby Brissett

Tight End Trey Burton

Running Back Marlon Mack

Wide Receiver T.Y. Hilton

Left Tackle Le’Raven Clark

Defensive End Justin Houston

Offensive Tackle Chaz Green

Offensive Lineman Joey Hunt

Defensive End Al-Quadin Muhammad