Colts Sign OL Trai Essex, Release Mike Person And A.Q. Shipley

Aug. 25, 2012; Orchard Park, NY, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers tackle Trai Essex (79) during the second half against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Steelers beat the Bills 38-7. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-US PRESSWIRE

The Indianapolis Colts today made a much needed roster move, signing free agent offensive guard Trai Essex and waiving offensive tackle Mike Person and center A.Q. Shipley.

Essex is in his eighth year in the league, spending the previous seven in Pittsburgh with the Steelers. He played under Colts offensive coordinator Bruce Arians, so he is very familiar with the system. The Fort Wayne, Indiana product (out of Paul Harding High School) attended Northwestern before being drafted in the third round of the 2005 NFL draft by the Steelers. Essex's biggest strength is his ability to play all five offensive line positions, something he did in 2011 for the Steelers. At the end of camp this year, the Steelers released Essex. In his career he has played 75 games (starting 28) and has won two super bowl championships and three AFC titles.

Essex figures to play left guard for the Colts, with Joe Reitz injured and Seth Olsen being... well, terrible. He may even start this week.

Mike Person was signed by the Colts off of waivers from the 49ers just over a week ago. I thought he had some potential, but apparently the Colts thought otherwise. A.Q. Shipley lasted through training camp, but only made it one game into the regular season with the Colts. He was nothing more than a depth player.

The Colts currently have one roster spot open. I fully expect general manager Ryan Grigson to sign another offensive lineman in an attempt to improve a unit that was awful Sunday. With the franchise player dropping back to throw in Andrew Luck, putting an emphasis on protecting him would be a good idea.

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