Zbikowski Headed To Indy

Former defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano takes another Ravens player.

Posted by Ryan Mink on Friday, March 16th, 2012 at 3:41 pm | Categories: Ryan Mink

The Ravens lost both of their unrestricted free-agent backup safeties in the same day.

And they’ve also now had two defenders follow former Ravens defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano to Indianapolis.

Tom Zbikowski has agreed to terms on a contract with the Colts, he confirmed via Twitter. Zbikowski’s agent Ralph Cindrich tweeted Saturday morning that he signed a three-year deal with the Colts.

Zbikowski joins defensive end Cory Redding in Indianapolis as Pagano retools his roster. 

Zbikowski is the fifth unrestricted free agent to leave Baltimore since free agency opened on Tuesday, including the fourth on defense.

Safety Haruki Nakamura signed a three-year deal with the Carolina Panthers earlier in the day Friday, leaving the Ravens without a backup safety currently on the active roster behind starters Ed Reed and Bernard Pollard.

Drafted by the Ravens in the third round in 2008, Zbikowski was Baltimore’s top backup safety. He also spent time as the team’s kick returner.

When Reed missed the first six games of the 2010 season, Zbikowski stepped in as the starter and helped keep the secondary among the top in the league. When Reed missed four straight games near the end of 2009, Zbikowski started and made two interceptions.

Zbikowski, 26, began last year as the starting strong safety, but was overtaken by free-agent addition Pollard four games into the season.

Zbikowski finished the year with 23 tackles and one sack. The former Notre Dame standout averaged 23.2 yards on nine kick returns and was fourth on the team with seven special-teams tackles. He could also return punts.

A gritty player who took up professional boxing during last season’s lockout, Zbikwoski should be in line to start in Pagano’s secondary, which had David Caldwell and Antoine Bethea as its two starting safeties last season.

The Ravens do have reserve safety Emanuel Cook as an exclusive rights free agent. After signing him midway through last year after he was cut by the New York Jets, Cook was active for the final seven games.

Tags: , , ,