A day after hosting his workout, the Indianapolis Colts announced on Tuesday that the team has signed defensive lineman Da’Shawn Hand to their practice squad and waived veteran cornerback Darqueze Dennard in a corresponding move.
Originally a 2018 4th round pick of the Detroit Lions out of Alabama, the 6’3”, 297 pound defensive end (with 34 1/2” arms) has 54 tackles (39 solo), 6 tackles for loss, 3.0 sacks, 2 passes defensed, 3 forced fumbles, and a fumble recovery during 29 career games (11 starts).
He was formerly named to PFWA’s All-Rookie Team in 2018 but was relegated to backup duty in 2020 with Detroit before being placed on injured reserve twice this current season—where he was ultimately released from in late November by the Lions.
The Colts were without rotational one-technique defensive tackle Antwaun Woods (calf) last weekend against the New England Patriots because of injury. Perhaps, the team will look to deploy the bigger bodied defensive end, Hand, as more of a defensive tackle inside.
For what it’s worth, Hand projects more favorably physically measurable wise as a defensive tackle—rather than as a defensive end:
Da'Shawn Hand is a likely day two prospect with a great #RAS profile. His very poor 3 Cone might turn some off, but his speed and explosion are fantastic.— Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) April 22, 2018
Some teams view him as a DE in a 3-4, but he has the tools to play anywhere inside. pic.twitter.com/On4aRmVG5Y
Regardless, the team just bolstered their defensive line depth on the practice squad, adding a young player with some starting experience into the fold—should they need to eventually promote Hand to the 53-man active roster.