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Former Lions tight end Eric Ebron signs with Colts

Justin Rogers
The Detroit News

Indianapolis — Eric Ebron has found a new home.

The former Detroit Lions’ first-round draft pick, who was unceremoniously cut before the start of the new league year, has signed a two-year contract with the Indianapolis Colts.

The NFL Network reports that pact with the Colts could be worth up to $15 million with incentives. Ebron was set to make $8.25 million with the Lions in 2018, had he not been released.

“I fell in love with the coaching staff and I fell in love with the GM,” Ebron said on a conference call with Indianapolis reporters. “That’s what kind of pushed the envelope for me to want to be here. Everyone showed love and a lot of support for my game and my family and the things that I wanted to accomplish. It was something I prayed on and I asked for a symbol, a light, and that’s exactly what happened on this visit. It was a no-brainer after that.”

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Asked to sum up his sometimes-tumultuous, four-year stint with the Lions, Ebron largely declined to comment.

“I really have nothing to put in perspective on what happened there,” he said. “I’m on a totally different team and I have nothing to say about the organization. I’m really thankful for them blessing me with an opportunity to play. But I really have nothing to say about the organization.”

Selected No. 10 overall in 2014, Ebron struggled to live up to his lofty draft status. After he caught just 25 passes as a rookie, his production steadily increased the next two years, peaking with a 61-reception campaign in 2016. And after a terrible start to last season, he closed strong, finishing with 53 grabs for 574 yards and four touchdowns.

The Lions shopped Ebron at the trade deadline last offseason, and again before releasing him, but couldn’t find a taker.

Ebron, 24, will look to get his career back on its upward trajectory with a franchise looking to do the same. He could be a potent weapon for quarterback Andrew Luck, who has shown a propensity for working the ball to his tight ends.

Of course, Luck remains a big question mark for the Colts. He missed all of last season recovering from a shoulder injury. As of last month, he had yet to resume throwing footballs.