Colts Promote Inside Linebacker Luke Rhodes from Practice Squad to 53-man Roster

The Indianapolis Colts announced on Wednesday that the team has promoted inside linebacker Luke Rhodes from their practice squad and signed safety Stefan McClure to their 10-man taxi squad in a corresponding roster move.

It’s worth noting that the Colts have a temporary 53-man roster spot exemption after starting inside linebacker D’Qwell Jackson was suspended for 4 games for violating the league’s performance-enhancing drug policy.

Jan 23, 2016; Carson, CA, USA; American Team running back Jacobi Green of Richmond (21) runs the ball as National Team linebacker Luke Rhodes of William and Mary (51) attempts to tackle during the first half of the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl at StubHub Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

While Jackson serves his suspension, Rhodes figures to provide additional depth at the team’s inside linebacker position in the mean time.

The 6’2″, 242 pound inside linebacker was originally signed by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as an undrafted rookie free agent following this year’s NFL Draft, but was part of the team’s final 53-man roster cuts before being signed to the Colts practice squad in early October.

The former William & Mary linebacker starred for the Tribe, recording 78 tackles including 5.5 tackles for loss, 4 passes deflected, 2 forced fumbles, and 1 fumble recovery in 12 games last season.

He was a two-time captain for William & Mary, finishing 5th all-time in the school’s history with 341 career tackles. Not to mention, he was a 3x 1st-Team All-CAA selection.

The Colts had interest in Rhodes prior to last year’s draft, as the team reportedly worked him out.

If he’s active on game day, he should be able to contribute immediately on special teams.

Aug 13, 2016; Orchard Park, NY, USA; Indianapolis Colts defensive back Stefan McClure (42) against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

Meanwhile, McClure was signed as an undrafted free agent out of Cal following this year’s NFL Draft by the Colts and remained with the team all offseason until he was a part of the team’s final 53-man roster cuts in early September.

In 3 preseason games (1 start) with the Colts, the 5’11”, 205 pound safety recorded 3 tackles.

The former Cal safety recorded 61 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, 3 pass breakups, a sack, and a fumble recovery that he returned 45 yards for a touchdown in 13 games last season. He earned All-Pac 12 honorable mention for the first time.

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