Colts: 3 pass rushing free agents who should be Indy’s top focus

Free agent DE Carl Lawson (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images)
Free agent DE Carl Lawson (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images) /
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Free agent DE Yannick Ngakoue (Photo by Bryan Bennett/Getty Images) /

1. Yannick Ngakoue

Yannick Ngakoue should be the Colts’ top pass rushing focus this offseason.

We’ve been waxing poetic about Yannick Ngakoue being one of the most underrated pass rushers in the NFL for months on end, so the Colts and general manager Chris Ballard would really be doing us a solid by signing him in free agency.

In all seriousness, Ngakoue would actually be an incredibly smart addition for Indianapolis, especially if he’s available for $15 million per year like some simulators suggest. The former second-round pick has never generated more than 10 sacks in one season, but the fact that he’s averaged 9.1 over five years is a huge testament to his consistency.

Ngakoue is always among the league leaders in pressures and knockdowns, as well as forced fumbles, having jarred a whopping 18 footballs loose across his career. At 25 years old, he could be the Colts’ solution at DE for the foreseeable future, and we’d see nothing wrong with offering a deal along the lines of five years for $75 million with $30 million guaranteed.

Whereas guys like Okwara and Lawson would be viewed as under-the-radar signings by most fans, landing an established star like Ngakoue would send a message to the rest of the NFL that the Colts mean business and intend on competing for a championship (assuming other roster holes are filled) as soon as 2021.