INDIANAPOLIS- The Indianapolis Colts made it official on Thursday morning that they have agreed to terms with former Cleveland Browns linebacker D’Qwell Jackson. The 30-year-old visited Indianapolis when he was let go by the Browns last week and loved the fit. Jackson said this week he would choose from four teams as his next destination.
That became official today as Colts owner Jim Irsay tweeted out they have signed the veteran linebacker.
The signing improves this Colts’ defense dramatically. Jackson had 824 career tackles in just seven seasons in Cleveland. He also had 11.5 sacks and eight interceptions as he was becoming one of the better linebackers in the NFL. Cleveland is in the midst of a rebuilding effort, and Jackson was perturbed when the team fired head coach Rod Chudzinski after the season.
The Colts made a bold move by bringing Chudzinski over to be a special assistant coach to Chuck Pagano, and that move likely made Jackson’s decision even easier.
Jackson played his entire seven-year career with Cleveland and will start getting more recognition on this Colts team. This move makes Indianapolis very feared at the linebacking spot as they will bring back Jerrell Freeman and Robert Mathis.
That trio with Erik Walden or Bjoern Werner (one of those two will start at the other outside LB spot) will give the Colts one of the best linebacking corps in the entire league. This move now allows Indianapolis to focus on the front line of the defense and secondary this offseason which should put them in the running for the Super Bowl in 2014.
Eric Smith is the Colts Beat Writer for Rant Sports. He’s covered the team the past four seasons and is recognized as an accredited member of the media by the Colts. Follow him on Twitter @ericsportsguru