June 19, 2024

INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA - OCTOBER 01: Shaquille Leonard #53 of the Indianapolis Colts reacts before the game against the Los Angeles Rams at Lucas Oil Stadium on October 01, 2023 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images)

FRISCO: Three-time All-Pro Shaq Leonard is pausing to think back on a recent past he describes

as “shocking” as he mulls over his NFL future, which we would suggest might be worth exploring with the Dallas Cowboys.


“That’s the thing that hurts me the most,” Leonard stated after being abruptly cut by the Indianapolis Colts on Tuesday. “I feel like as the leader of that locker room, I left (my teammates) hanging.


Known by most as Darius Leonard, he now goes by his middle name, “The Maniac,” and has been one of the league’s best linebackers since joining the NFL in 2018 as a second-round pick of the Colts.


We were right when we said he would clear waivers.


We also made hints that Dallas might be interested, and our information there appears to be accurate as well, based on several reports.


Recently, Indianapolis had reduced his playing time, which may have been partially due to a decline in the 28-year-old’sperformance. Nevertheless, he believes he was called into the front office on Tuesday to discuss his role, which is one of the reasons he is calling the move “shocking.”


only to discover Indianapolis has determined he has no part to play.


“It was the biggest surprise ever,” he said.


Leonard, who spent his first six seasons in Indianapolis as a starting quarterback, is currently vulnerable to waivers by the NFL. His new employer would be the team that claims him, as the order is similar to the NFL Draft, with the worst teams going first.


We knew he would clear waivers and be able to choose his own team because of his salary, which essentially would have required a team to pick up a portion of his massive $98 million contract should they claim him.


Shaq Leonard led the NFL in tackles during his rookie season in 2018 and was named to the First Team All-Pro and Defensive Rookie of the Year. He continued to perform largely in the same way for the next three seasons, winning Pro Bowl and All-Pro recognition each time.

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