The Indianapolis Colts need to rebuild their flawed defense, and one way to do that is by adding a strong presence at the center of their defense. One guy who could fill that role is free agent Paul Worrilow.
Worrilow went undrafted in the 2013 NFL Draft and subsequently signed with the Atlanta Falcons as a rookie free agent. He quickly gained traction within the organization and became the Falcons’ starting inside linebacker midway through his rookie campaign.
Four years later, Worrilow has started in 43 of the 59 games he has played in. In that time span, he has accumulated 382 combined tackles, four sacks, three forced fumbles and two interceptions.
This past year, Worrilow fell out of favor in the Falcons’ defensive rotation. He only started one game and primarily spent his time playing on special teams.
While the Falcons are appreciative of everything Worrilow has done, they have not been non-committal about re-signing him. The team is letting him test the market, and apparently the Colts are interested.
Understandably, there might be some who are skeptical of this report because it is a Patriots’ beat writer reporting the Colts’ interest. However, pursuing Worrilow makes a lot of sense for Indianapolis.
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The Colts released veteran inside linebacker D’Qwell Jackson because he was getting old, and the team wanted to clear up some cap space. Jackson had been the team’s most productive defensive player over the past three years.
With Jackson gone, the Colts have inexperienced linebackers Antonio Morrison and Edwin Jackson left to take over the starting mantle. Combined, the two players only have 12 starts, and of them came last year.
A 26-year-old player like Worrilow will give them a proven piece to work with at the position. Also, it would force Morrison and Jackson to compete against one another for the other starting role. As a result, both players could dramatically improve through the position battle.
Worrilow has proven to be a solid run stopper as an inside linebacker. He has very good knack for reading opposing offensive lines and attacking running backs in open lanes.
His pass coverage skills may be a little suspect. However, the Colts need a playmaker in the middle of their defense, and Worrilow has proven to be one when given the opportunity.
Ultimately, Worrilow fits what the Colts are looking for. He is young and fills a position need. It is likely he will likely cost a good chuck of money because so many teams will be interested in him. However, there are not many downsides to adding the four-year pro to the roster.