With the Indianapolis Colts very thin at cornerback, the team is making moves at the position to try to add depth. Owner Jim Irsay tweeted out several roster moves the team made today: they signed cornerback Josh Thomas, waived cornerback Eric Patterson, released cornerback Brandon Dixon from the practice squad, and waived running back Vick Ballard off of injured reserve with an injury settlement.
Thomas is entering his fifth season in the NFL and has played in 43 games (ten starts) during time spent with the Carolina Panthers (2011-13), Seattle Seahawks (2014), New York Jets (2014), and Detroit Lions (2014). The bulk of his action came with Carolina after he was waived by the Dallas Cowboys after being drafted in the fifth round out of Buffalo by the team in 2011 and spending training camp and preseason with them. During his career, he has made 66 tackles, 11 passes defensed, and an interception. At the very least, Thomas provides the Colts with some experience at a position that doesn't have much of it.
With Vontae Davis in the concussion protocol, Greg Toler still week-to-week with a neck injury, and Darius Butler day-to-day with a hip injury, plus D'Joun Smith on injured reserve with the designation to return, the corner position is very thin for the Colts. Jalil Brown, Sheldon Price, and Eric Patterson were the only corners on the roster who finished the game healthy last night, and now the team has waived Patterson - an undrafted rookie out of Ball State who was on the Colts' practice squad but signed shortly before Monday's game as depth.
I do wonder whether the Colts plan on signing Patterson back to the practice squad if he clears waivers, which could be the reason behind the move to release Brandon Dixon from the practice squad. Normally, teams don't just leave an open spot on their practice squad for too long, so we'll have to wait and see - but I do think it makes sense that Patterson might be back there shortly.
Lastly, Vick Ballard was released from injured reserve with an injury settlement, meaning that he is a free agent. The way this works is that the team and the player agree upon how long the injury will take to recover and agree to pay the player for that length of time. It means that Ballard is free to sign with any team at any time, however, if he gets a look. He might be worth a shot from some team, but it's no sure thing. He will have to wait six weeks after he is healthy before he would be allowed to return to the Colts, however. This is the same situation that happened with Boom Herron.