INDIANAPOLIS — The Indianapolis Colts today signed four undrafted free agents, including kicker Cole Hedlund, defensive tackle Sterling Shippy, cornerback Shakial Taylor and linebacker Tre Thomas. All four players participated in the Colts’ 2019 Rookie Mini-Camp on a tryout basis. The team also waived kicker Clayton Hatfield, cornerback Chris Rayford and defensive end Anthony Winbush.
Hedlund, 5-9, 162 pounds, saw action in 35 games at North Texas (2018) and Arkansas (2014-17) and converted 33-of-46 field goals and 142-of-145 PATs. In 2018, he made 19-of-22 field goals and 51-of-54 PATs to rank 24th in the nation in scoring with 108 points. Hedlund was a First Team All-Conference USA selection and was a semifinalist for the Lou Groza Award, which annually recognizes college football’s top kicker. Prior to transferring to North Texas, he spent four seasons at Arkansas, where he converted 14-of-24 field goals and 91-of-91 PATs. As a redshirt freshman in 2015, Hedlund tied a school record for PATs made in a season (58) and was one of four SEC kickers to make all of his PATs (minimum of 50 attempts).
Shippy, 5-11, 295 pounds, played in 34 games at Alcorn State (2016-18) and totaled 94 tackles (42 solo), 32.5 tackles for loss, 11.0 sacks, two passes defensed, one fumble recovery and two forced fumbles. In 2018, he was a Second Team AFCA All-America selection after appearing in 13 games and registering 38 tackles (17 solo), 14.5 tackles for loss, 8.0 sacks, one pass defensed, one fumble recovery and two forced fumbles. Shippy saw action in 11 games in 2017 and tallied 17 tackles (eight solo), 3.5 tackles for loss, half a sack and one pass defensed. In 2016, he played in 10 games and finished with 39 tackles (17 solo), 14.5 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks.
Taylor, 5-11, 175 pounds, saw action in 21 games at Kansas (2017-18) and compiled 55 tackles (46 solo), 1.0 tackle for loss, three interceptions (one returned for a touchdown), eight passes defensed and one forced fumble. In 2018, he appeared in 12 games and finished with 33 tackles (28 solo), 1.0 tackle for loss, three interceptions (one returned for a touchdown), five passes defensed and one forced fumble. Taylor played in nine games in 2017 and recorded 22 tackles (18 solo) and three passes defensed. He played the 2016 season at Mesa Community College, where he saw action in 11 games and collected 42 tackles, half a tackle for loss, one interception and 18 passes defensed. In 2015, Taylor played in 11 games at South Dakota State and tallied seven tackles and one pass defensed.
Thomas, 6-1, 221 pounds, played in 51 games (24 starts) at Colorado State (2014-18) and totaled 218 tackles (111 solo), 18.5 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks, one interception, six passes defensed and one fumble recovery. His 51 career games tied for fourth in program history. In 2018, Thomas saw action in all 12 games (10 starts) and compiled 101 tackles (42 solo), 4.5 tackles for loss, 2.0 sacks, four passes defensed and one fumble recovery. He appeared in all 13 games (one start) in 2017 and registered 41 tackles (23 solo), 2.0 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks, one interception and two passes defensed. Thomas played in all 13 games (10 starts) in 2016 and tallied 38 tackles (22 solo), 7.0 tackles for loss and 1.0 sack. In 2015, he appeared in all 13 games (three starts) and collected 38 tackles (24 solo) and 5.0 tackles for loss. Thomas redshirted as a true freshman in 2014.
Hatfield, 5-9, 185 pounds, signed with the Colts as an undrafted free agent on May 3, 2019. He played in 42 games at Texas Tech. Hatfield converted 50-of-59 field goal attempts and 195-of-201 PATs for 345 points. He handled kickoff duties and registered 96 touchbacks on 204 attempts.
Rayford, 5-10, 199 pounds, signed with Indianapolis as an undrafted free agent on May 3, 2019. He played in 52 games (11 starts) at Mississippi State and totaled 55 tackles (38 solo), 2.0 tackles for loss, four passes defensed, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery.
Winbush, 6-1, 249 pounds, signed a reserve/future contract with the Colts on January 13, 2019. He spent time on the Colts practice squad last season. Winbush participated in the Atlanta Falcons’ 2018 offseason program and training camp before being waived prior to the start of the regular season. Collegiately, the Indianapolis native played in 45 games (23 starts) at Ball State and totaled 99 tackles (56 solo), 32.5 tackles for loss, 25.0 sacks, one pass defensed, nine forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries.