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Gary Brackett reaches five-year deal with Colts

The Indianapolis Colts will not be losing their defensive captain. And they also won’t be signing any unrestricted free agents.

Adam Schefter of ESPN is reporting that the Colts and linebacker Gary Brackett have reached an agreement on a five-year deal. Brackett is a team captain and a good fit for the Colts on the field and in the locker room, and the Colts made clear that they wanted to keep him. That they’ve reached a deal is, for the Colts, good news.

But the bad news is that if the Colts had their eyes on any unrestricted free agents, they won’t be able to sign them. As one of the final four teams (along with the Saints, Vikings and Jets), the Colts can only sign an unrestricted free agent after they lose one. And Brackett was the only unrestricted free agent they had a chance of losing; their other unrestricted free agent, kicker Matt Stover, is expected to retire.

The Colts, however, have long believed in building through the draft and keeping their home-grown players, rather than building through free agency. So their inability to sign a free agent isn’t a big problem, and their ability to keep their defensive captain is a big relief.