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Colts left tackle Anthony Castonzo gets contract extension

Left tackle receives reported $43.6 million, $35 million guaranteed.

Anthony Castonzo has another reason to celebrate like he did after scoring his first career NFL touchdown last season.

The fifth-year offensive left tackle, who did a Street Fighter II Dhalism victory dance in the end zone, received a contract extension Thursday night, the team announced. The deal is for $43.6 million over four years with $35 million guaranteed for the first three seasons, according to multiple reports.

Castonzo, 27, has started all 60 games of his NFL career since his first-round selection with the 22nd overall pick in 2011.

“Left tackles like Anthony Castonzo are hard to come by,” Colts general manager Ryan Grigson said in the team release. “He's a team first guy that works as hard at his craft as anyone I have ever been around regardless of position. His desire to be great literally consumes him and he is a shining example of the sacrifice it truly takes every single day to be at the top of his game come Sunday.

“From ownership on down, we are all extremely happy that A.C. will be wearing the horseshoe for many years to come.”

Castonzo has started 56 consecutive games dating back to his rookie year in 2011, the fifth-longest streak among active NFL tackles. Last season, the Colts release had him participating in 1,090 offensive plays, which led all NFL players.

The Colts offense set a franchise single-season record with 6,506 net yards and 4,894 net passing yards last season.

What many will remember is when Castonzo became the first Colts offensive lineman to score a touchdown since 2008 when he hauled in a 1-yard TD pass on Nov. 16, 2014, against the New England Patriots at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Castonzo protects the blind side of three-time Pro Bowl quarterback Andrew Luck, who has thrown for more passing yards (12,957) in the first three seasons of a career in NFL history.

As a rookie in 2011, he started all 12 games and was not flagged for a single holding penalty during the season.

That same year, Luck set rookie NFL passing records with 4,374 yards and six 300-yard passing games.

Colts owner Jim Irsay wanted to get Castonzo and Pro Bowl wide receiver T.Y. Hilton signed to long-term extensions before the start of the regular season. Last month during training camp, Hilton received a five-year, $65-million deal with $38 million guaranteed.

The Colts open the regular season Sunday at the Buffalo Bills.

Phillip B. Wilson also can be found on Facebook and Google+.


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