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Trent Cole takes pay cut with Colts

According to ESPN's Field Yates, Colts linebacker Trent Cole has taken a pay cut.

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

As we entered the offseason, one of the most obvious potential cap casualties for the Indianapolis Colts was outside linebacker Trent Cole.  He didn't produce in 2015 and the Colts could save $6.125 million in cap space by cutting him, so the move seemed obvious.  It turns out that the Colts have still received some cap savings while still keeping Cole around, as ESPN's Field Yates reports that Cole has taken a pay cut.

According to Yates, Cole reduced his base salary from $4.25 million in 2016 to $2 million, meaning his cap hit will be $4.875 million this year (according to Spotrac).  That means that the Colts save $2.25 million in cap space, which isn't a ton but will still certainly help.

It's possible (though we haven't heard either way yet) that Cole was faced with the proposition of either restructuring his contract or being released, in which case he choose to stay with the team.  It's a good move for the Colts, and the reason why they are appearing to keep them seems to be the same reason that made the move an uncertainty for months: the weakness of the team's pass rush.  The Colts likely offered Cole a chance to stay at a reduced salary because they realized they can't just be cutting their pass rushers but also realized they couldn't pay Cole so much since he hasn't produced.  What this means is that the Colts will have Trent Cole back as a pass rush option, and while he wasn't great in 2015, having a number of pass rush options is never a bad thing.