After over a week since their last free-agent signing, multiple reports have said that the Indianapolis Colts have reached an agreement with pass-rusher Justin Houston — formerly of the Kansas City Chiefs. Adam Schefter of ESPN was the first to report.
Colts reached agreement with former Chiefs’ LB Justin Houston, source tells ESPN.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 21, 2019
The deal, which Schefter says is a two-year, $24 million deal, brings in a necessary veteran presence to a position of need for the Colts. Houston, who recently turned 30, is coming off back-to-back, nine-sack seasons with a career mark of 78.5. He was let go by the Kansas City Chiefs, after spending eight seasons in the AFC West.
Houston’s presence in rushing the passer will create a pivotal boost for a team that ranked 19th in the nation in total sacks last season (38). The expectation should be that Houston slides into the defensive end position in the Colts’ 4-3 scheme, primarily in passing situations.
The former Georgia product will join in as the oldest defensive end on the Colts roster, and is the second player on the defensive line past the age of 30 — Margus Hunt, 32.
A good locker room presence, Houston will also play a key role in mentoring the young talents on the Colts’ defensive line. Tyquan Lewis and Kemoko Turay will enter their second seasons in 2019, with nine defensive lineman at 26 years of age or younger.
Financially, Houston will become the third highest-paid player on the team (according to Spotrac) behind quarterback Andrew Luck and wide receiver TY Hilton. While the Colts have brought back several of their own the last two weeks, Houston joins wide receiver Devin Funchess as the two newcomers to the program.