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Indianapolis Colts: Breaking Down 5 Potential Free-Agent Targets for Colts

Eli NachmanyCorrespondent IIIJune 24, 2016

Indianapolis Colts: Breaking Down 5 Potential Free-Agent Targets for Colts

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    Indianapolis Star reporter Mike Chappell opines that five free agents could be a good fit with the Colts.

    After an 11-5 season and wild-card berth into the playoffs, Indianapolis may just be one or two pieces away from competing with the Texans for the division title.

    The following players may or may not be good fits, but the fact that Chappell mentions the high-profile players he does could be a good indicator that Indianapolis will be active in free agency.

OLB Cliff Avril

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    Cliff Avril could be an interesting option for the Colts, as he'd have to transition to the outside linebacker position from a 3-4 front.

    Avril is an able pass-rusher who has the ability to be a presence off the edge, but the big question will be whether or not he's willing to change his scheme.

    There isn't much tape of Avril dropping into pass coverage, so we'll assume he's limited in that regard.

    It's tough to say whether or not he'll be a good player in the Colts' attacking scheme.

OT Branden Albert

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    The Chiefs want to use the first overall pick on Texas A&M left tackle Luke Joeckel and are likely going to let Branden Albert hit the open market.

    According to Chappell, Andy Reid has labeled Albert's back injury as "fairly significant," so it's a situation worth monitoring.

    That said, if Albert checks out with the Colts' doctors, and general manager Ryan Grigson has faith in his medical team, Indianapolis would be well-suited to give the left tackle a long look.

    Anthony Castonzo had a solid 2012, and the Colts would be smart to pair him with Albert on the other side, giving Andrew Luck a great duo of bookend tackles.

CB Cary Williams

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    The Colts could use a second cornerback, and much-maligned defender Cary Williams makes a lot of sense—depending on how much he asks for.

    Head coach Chuck Pagano was Williams' defensive coordinator in Baltimore, so he knows how to get the most out of him.

    Out of the players on this list, Williams probably has the best chance of ending up in Indianapolis. It's tough to see him commanding too much on the open market, and the Colts have a real need here.

OG Louis Vasquez

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    If the Colts feel like either of UNC's Jonathan Cooper or Alabama's Chance Warmack will fall to them in draft, there's no need to make this signing.

    That said, with both draft prospects shooting up the board, Indianapolis may be inclined to simply bring in 25-year-old Louis Vasquez.

    The Chargers are going to offer Vasquez a lot of money, as their offensive line is the top priority this offseason, according to Michael Gehlken from U-T San Diego.

    If Indianapolis strikes out with this guard, Bills linesman Andy Levitre is also very solid and would make sense.

OLB Paul Kruger

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    Beefing up the pass rush will be a top priority this offseason, and the difference between Paul Kruger and Cliff Avril is that Kruger already knows head coach Chuck Pagano's schemes from his time in Baltimore.

    Kruger can rush the passer, but he's also very skilled when it comes to playing the run and covering zones from the 3-4 outside linebacker spot.

    If the two command similar money on the open market, Paul Kruger and Cliff Avril may be separated in the Colts' eyes simply by 3-4 experience. Kruger makes a good amount of sense for Indianapolis.

    There are rumblings that the Browns could also go after Kruger, and while the linebacker hasn't ever performed well without the presence of at least one of Haloti Ngata and Terrell Suggs on the same defense, the fact that he's drawing a lot of interest speaks to his ability to make an impact.

     

    Follow me on Twitter @EliNachmany for NFL news and updates.

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