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NFL: NOV 28 Steelers at Colts

INDIANAPOLISProjection will be the name of the game in examining the free agency for Colts linebacker E.J. Speed.

In 4 NFL seasons, Speed has definitely shown flashes—both on special teams and defensively.

He’s started just 6 games though, playing 494 defensive snaps (314 this past year).

Do NFL teams view the 27-year-old as a guy ready for a full-time starting role in the league?

That doesn’t appear to be available in Indianapolis.

But that shouldn’t mean the Colts immediately write off Speed staying with the Colts.

For one, Speed played the most special teams snaps of any Colt last year.

He could also be viewed as needed insurance behind Shaquille Leonard. And if Bobby Okereke walks in free agency this offseason, Speed could be the team’s third linebacker in 2023.

Plus, unlike Okereke, Speed is likely to garner a much more manageable contract on the open market, which is something the Colts have to keep in mind given how much money they’ve already handed out to the linebacker position.

Speed is an interesting case study.

His growth, which was needed coming out of Tarleton State in 2019, has been there.

How the league and the Colts view that is going to be fascinating.

2023 Free Agent Watches

-Yannick Ngakoue

-Chase McLaughlin

-Bobby Okereke

-Parris Campbell

Tyquan Lewis

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