The Dontari Poe free agency tour has come to a close. Poe has decided to sign with the Atlanta Falcons, the team announced today. It is reportedly a one-year deal worth $8 million that could increase to $10 million with incentives.
That ends a week-long process in which Poe visited with multiple teams, including the Colts, Jaguars, Dolphins, and Falcons. The Colts were his first visit last Sunday, but he left without a deal. It’s likely that Poe wasn’t finding the money he wanted, and the Miami Herald’s Armando Salguero mentioned that the Dolphins wanted to pay Poe $3-4 million on a one-year deal. It’s unclear what the Colts were offering to Poe, but it’s likely that it wasn’t exactly what the defensive tackle wanted. It’s also unclear whether the Colts were interested in doing a one-year deal, as it would have meant paying significant money to a guy for one year in which the Colts and Chris Ballard realize they are rebuilding.
Either way, Chris Ballard likely knows what a pretty fair market value is for Poe, who he was with in Kansas City for the past several years. It’s also likely that Ballard knows pretty well about how much long-term concern there is with Poe’s back, which is something that apparantly concerns some.
The Colts will need to move on from Poe to find more help along the defensive line, but it appeared as if they were already doing that this morning even before Poe’s decision was announced. The Colts signed defensive tackle Al Woods today and are reportedly bringing John Jenkins in for a visit tomorrow. Furthermore, Giants nose tackle Johnathan Hankins is still available and would be a very good signing without much dropoff at all from Poe (if any). So the Colts will still have options, which means that Poe signing with the Falcons isn’t the end of the world. The Colts knew what they wanted to pay Poe, didn’t overpay, and still will have good defensive line options in free agency.