On Wednesday evening the Indianapolis Colts claimed veteran outside linebacker Shaun Phillips off of waivers from the Tennessee Titans. He has notched 81.5 sacks and 22 forced fumbles in 163 career games (121 starts), yet he's 33-years old and was released by the Titans recently. The Colts certainly could use help at the pass rush position, however, and he's certainly worth the waiver claim.
"We feel like we've got a really good football player added to our roster," Colts head coach Chuck Pagano said on Friday. "He's got versatility, first and second down, third down, good pass rusher, got a lot of numbers, played a lot of good football. There's familiarity with the system and the coaches."
But how will the Colts use him this Sunday against the Washington Redskins? "How we use him and when we use him, we'll kind of figure that out on Sunday," Pagano said. "I think the combination of him along with Bjoern (Werner), (Jonathan) Newsome, (Erik) Walden, (Cory) Redding, Ricky Jean (Francois), however, we just feel like we got another good football here."
Pagano added later that, "for us to say he's going to go in there and play 60 snaps probably isn't realistic. But there's some ways we can use him and utilize his talents. Again, whether it's first or second down, third down, what have you, there's going to be a time and place to be able to use him and use him the right way."
Shaun Phillips said on Thursday that the Colts will likely use him as a third down pass rusher, and that certainly makes sense. His playing time will likely come at the expense of Erik Walden and Jonathan Newsome a bit, but it's one that is worth a shot for the Colts. They've struggled to get consistent pass rush this year and perhaps a veteran pass rusher like Phillips can help in that area. It's certainly worth a shot, and on Sunday he'll make his debut for the Colts as they take on the Redskins.