230221 Blackmon [1296x729]
230221 Blackmon [1296x729] (Credit: Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire)

INDIANAPOLIS -- Versatile safety Julian Blackmon has re-signed with the Colts on a one-year contract, a source confirmed to ESPN.

Blackmon had been seeking a multiyear deal but was a victim of poor timing given the multiple recent cuts of veteran safeties around the NFL. Rather than re-sign with the Colts early on, as many of the team's in-house free agents did, Blackmon instead tested the market in search of a better deal.

But after visiting with the Buffalo Bills and San Francisco 49ers, Blackmon returns home to Indianapolis. The Colts had been looking to bolster their young secondary, which struggled after Blackmon sustained a season-ending injury late last season.

The re-signing of Blackmon is just the latest in a series of such moves for the Colts. Already this spring the Colts have re-signed or extended receiver Michael Pittman Jr., linebacker Zaire Franklin, cornerback Kenny Moore II, nose tackle Grover Stewart, punter Rigoberto Sanchez and defensive lineman Tyquan Lewis.

Blackmon enjoyed a career season in 2023 but it ended in disappointing fashion after he suffered a season-ending shoulder injury in December. The former free safety thrived as a full-time strong safety with the Colts, playing 15 games and registering 4 interceptions, 8 passes defended and 88 tackles -- all career highs.

His injury was a big setback for the Colts, who suffered from blown coverages in a Week 18 loss to the Houston Texans that cost them a spot in the playoffs.

Blackmon provided a key leadership role for the Colts' young secondary. But while he's an experienced player, he's still quite young himself; Blackmon won't turn 26 until Aug. 24.

His ability to match up with a range of players, including tight ends, and his willingness to engage in run support, were seen as key attributes for the Colts in 2023.

Blackmon was drafted by Indianapolis in the third round in 2020, and he has posted 214 tackles, 7 interceptions (one returned for a touchdown), 2 forced fumbles, 3 recoveries and a sack in his four seasons with the Colts.