2017 Positional Preview: Defensive Tackle
The interior of the Colts’ defensive line will be manned by an oft-injured third-year player and a big-name free agent.
GM Chris Ballard was incredibly active in adding defensive talent this offseason after they ranked 29th in the league on that side of the ball according to Football Outsiders.
One of Indianapolis’ biggest signings during this year’s free agency period was adding defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins on a three-year $27 million deal.
Hankins has had a very good career as a run stuffer during his four seasons with the Giants, and he even racked up 7 sacks in the 2014 season. The 6′ 3″ 320-pound defensive tackle should help a run defense that ranked dead last in the NFL last season according to FO.
Colts fans have been treated to flashes of brilliance when Henry Anderson has been on the field during his two NFL seasons, but he’s only been healthy to play in 20 games during his brief career.
The Colts have liked what they’ve seen from Anderson, but he’ll need to stay healthy to be effective in 2017.
Indianapolis currently has eight defensive tackles on their roster as they try to sort out the depth chart during training camp.
T.Y McGill, Hassan Ridgeway, and David Parry will all return in 2017 after sharing a majority of the snaps for the Colts’ defense last season.
Parry is facing a possible suspension from an offseason DUI charge, but him, McGill, and Ridgeway all have plenty of potential going forward as the trio is all under the age of 26.
The Colts also signed a grizzled veteran in Al Woods this offseason after he spent the last three seasons with the Titans.
If Anderson and Hankins stay healthy, they will be an extremely formidable duo up the middle. McGill, Ridgeway, Parry, and Woods will provide some solid depth making up a good rotation of interior D-Linemen.
In case you missed it, here are our other positional previews: