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Report: Colts Won’t Retain DE Yannick Ngakoue for 2023 Season

The Indianapolis Colts are letting their team leader in sacks go after just one season.

Pittsburgh Steelers v Indianapolis Colts Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images

Defensive coordinator Gus Bradley was amongst several coaches and players who spoke with local media members on Wednesday. Bradley, who is in his second season as Indianapolis’ defensive coordinator, told reporters that defensive end Yannick Ngakoue would not be retained for the 2023 season.

“We lost Yannick Ngakoue,” Bradley said on Wednesday. “He was a tremendous player for us. That’s the NFL. There’s some times you bring new guys in, and they have to step up, and every year’s a new year with the team.”

Ngakoue, who entered the league in 2016 as a third-round pick of the Jacksonville Jaguars, has recorded a minimum of eight sacks in every season he’s played. He led the Colts’ defense with 9.5 sacks in 2022. The talented edge rusher remains a free agent.

Despite Ngakoue’s overall production last season, he does have some limitations as a run defender, which could be part of the reason the Colts chose to go in a different direction.

Indianapolis signed former San Francisco 49ers defensive end Samson Ebukam earlier this offseason. Ebukam signed a three-year, $27 million deal and looks to fill the LEO role in Bradley’s defensive system for the foreseeable future.

Ebukam also offers more versatility in the running game. He spent the last two seasons in San Francisco and recorded 9.5 sacks and 74 combined tackles during that period.