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Colts to visit with pass rusher Noah Spence

According to Bleacher Report's Matt Miller, Eastern Kentucky pass rusher Noah Spence has a visit lined up with the Indianapolis Colts.

Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

Arguably the biggest need for the Indianapolis Colts this offseason is pass rush, and they haven't yet addressed the area through free agency.  It's entirely possible that they will add help at the area in the draft, and they are doing their homework beforehand to see which prospects might be fits.

One of the best pass rush prospects in this year's draft class is Eastern Kentucky's Noah Spence, and according to Bleacher Report's Matt Miller, Spence has a visit lined up with the Colts.  In addition, Miller says that Spence has visits scheduled with the New York Jets, Green Bay Packers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Baltimore Ravens, Jacksonville Jaguars, Arizona Cardinals, and New Orleans Saints, with it being possible that more visits could still be scheduled.

Spence began his collegiate career at Ohio State and produced there, as in his sophomore season he recorded eight sacks, 14.5 tackles for loss, and was named first-team All-Big Ten.  He was then banned from the Big Ten conference for failing multiple drug tests, leading him to transfer to Eastern Kentucky.  He excelled during the 2015 season, notching 11.5 sacks and 22.5 tackles for loss.  As a 3-4 outside linebacker, Spence is likely the best in this year's draft at rushing the passer, but the off-the-field questions could result in him being available when the Colts pick 18th overall.  If that's the case, they absolutely would want to know more about Spence and those off-the-field concerns so that they would have a better idea of whether or not to draft him, which is likely why they (and several other teams) have visits scheduled.

If Spence can stay out of trouble, he has the potential to develop into a good pass rusher at the NFL level and would be a difference-maker for a Colts pass rush that is severely lacking in consistent playmakers.  Robert Mathis can still play a role, and the hope would be that Trent Cole might as well, but the Colts really don't have anyone to handle those duties consistently.  That's why, if Spence is available at number 18, the Colts have to seriously consider taking him, and that's also why they want to visit with him to learn more about him.