INDIANAPOLIS — Pierre Desir isn't hitting the open market, after all.
The Indianapolis Colts announced today that they have re-signed Desir, their top cornerback, as the two sides reportedly came to an agreement just before yesterday's 4 p.m. start of free agency.
Desir in 2018 put in a career year in his second season in Indianapolis. In 16 games with 12 starts, Desir — one of the top tackling cornerbacks in the NFL — finished with 79 total tackles (two for a loss) and logged one interception, eight passes defensed, two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery.
Desir also saved his best performances for the most crucial of times for the Colts, who won nine of their final 10 regular season games to go 10-6 and earn a playoff berth after starting the season with a 1-5 record.
Against the Houston Texans' DeAndre Hopkins, one of the most dangerous playmakers in the league, Desir helped contain the receiver to just four catches for 36 yards and a touchdown in the Colts' 24-21 Week 14 victory in Houston, and then held him to five receptions for 37 yards in Indy's Wild Card Round victory over its division rival Jan. 5 at NRG Stadium.
Desir also helped limit Amari Cooper, the Dallas Cowboys' top receiver, to just four receptions for 32 yards in the Colts' 15 victory at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Colts head coach Frank Reich said Desir's success on gamedays was no mistake, considering his approach everyday at practice.
"(He) practices really hard, very conscientious, works very hard," Reich said of Desir. "The guys wear stuff that measures their speed and the distance that they go in practice. It seems like every day Pierre is at the top of that list about how hard he is running and how fast he is running and how many yards he is putting in. He's very conscientious and what I think we have seen he just keeps getting better and better. Playing with more and more confidence every week, which has been great."
Desir, 6-2, 198 pounds, was originally claimed by the Colts off waivers from the Seattle Seahawks on September 3, 2017. He has played in 49 career games (25 starts) and has compiled 159 tackles (122 solo), 2.0 tackles for loss, 23 passes defensed, two interceptions, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery and one special teams stop in his time with the Colts (2017-18), San Diego Chargers (2016) and Cleveland Browns (2014-15). Desir has started two postseason contests and has tallied 11 tackles (eight solo) and one pass defensed.
Desir is the sixth Colts free-agent-to-be to be re-signed by the team this offseason, joining guard Mark Glowinski, kicker Adam Vinatieri, tight end Ross Travis, defensive end Margus Hunt and fellow cornerback Chris Milton.
Desir, who will be 29 by Week 1 of the 2019 regular season, will be counted on once again to lead a youthful, talented cornerback position that also includes Jalen Collins, Nate Hairston, D.J. Killings, Milton, Kenny Moore II and Quincy Wilson on the offseason roster.