INDIANAPOLIS — Matt Overton is staying in the AFC South Division in 2017, though his new home will feature a much different climate.
The long snapper on Thursday signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars, the team announced.
The Jaguars had a major need at the position after fifth-year long snapper Carson Tinker suffered a season-ending ACL tear during practice on Wednesday. Tinker has since been placed on the team's Injured Reserve list.
Overton has carved out a very unique path to the National Football League through his play with the Indianapolis Colts.
His professional football career actually began in the UFL and in Arena Football, and while the Seattle Seahawks gave Overton a shot on a couple occasions — prior to the 2007 and 2010 seasons — he would never catch on out west.
Then, finally, in the spring of 2012, the Colts came calling, but Overton — at the time collecting unemployment checks and sleeping on couches — had to compete with longtime long snapper Justin Snow for the position.
By final cuts, however, the job was all Overton's.
He quickly formed a bond with kicker Adam Vinatieri and punter Pat McAfee, and the trio eventually became affectionately known as the Colts' "Fourth Down Army." Individually, Overton also became known as one of the more consistent long snappers in the league, a fact cemented in 2013 when he was selected to the Pro Bowl.
During his five seasons in Indianapolis, Overton not only was a consistent on the Colts' special teams units, but he became a fan favorite off the field, as well. He consistently showed up at team charitable functions and took on his own community endeavors, perhaps most notably being a constant presence for patients and their families at Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis.
A son of a 31-year police veteran, Overton also has been a major supporter of local and state law enforcement, and has indicated an interest in looking into a possible career in the field when his playing days are done.
But he gets at least one more shot to continue living out his NFL dream with the Jaguars, who will, of course, play the Colts twice a season. Indianapolis decided to release Overton in early May in what was likely a cost-cutting move at the position. Since that time, the team has moved forward with rookie Thomas Hennessy, who has been working on getting his timing down with Vinatieri and new punter Jeff Locke.
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