Four Colts Waived, Team Thin at Safety

The Colts placed four players on waivers on Tuesday, three of whom were on injured reserve at the end of the season. And the moves left the team thin at safety, a likely signal that they'll be active in searching for new talent at the position. And they could even bring back one of their own...

While it wasn't surprising that the Colts released TE Jerome Collins (torn Achilles), LB Johnathan Goddard (broken bone, foot) or DE Jonathan Welsh (knee) after they each finished their season on injured reserve, one somewhat surprising move was the release of backup safety Dexter Reid.

By releasing Reid, a former New England Patriot who has been with the Colts for two years, the only remaining Colts safeties on the roster from the Super Bowl squad are starters Bob Sanders and Antoine Bethea and back-up Matt Giordano, who just completed his second season. Giordano showed significant growth in the position during his sophomore campaign.

The Colts signed a few free agents to reserve/future contracts for the 2007 season at the safety position, most recently Norman LeJeune, a former 7th-round pick by the Eagles back in 2003 who was waived by Miami. He spent the last two seasons bouncing between their active roster and practice squad. But to think that any of them are penciled in to the final 53-man roster at this point is a bit of a stretch.

Although Marlin Jackson played some safety this past season to fill in during injuries, the team is likely to lose Nick Harper and are likely to give Jackson the opportunity to win a starter's role at cornerback. That means the team should be active in scouting some safety talent at this week's Combine in Indianapolis.

But watch for the team to possibly make another move that would make the release of Reid more logical. They have the opportunity to reclaim one of their own, Gerome Sapp, who they traded to the Ravens last year in exchange for a draft pick. Sapp is an unrestricted free agent who was amongst the team leaders in special teams tackles for the Colts for two seasons. And he would add a more reliable, veteran presence to the team at safety than Reid while plugging a hole in the porous special teams coverage units.

In other roster news, the Colts re-signed former Eagles punter Reggie Hodges who played briefly for the team last summer towards the end of the preseason, filling in for Hunter Smith while he recovered from an injury.

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