The Indianapolis Colts today signed quarterback Alex Tanney and safety Dezmen Southward to the practice squad and released quarterback Matt Blanchard and guard Kitt O’Brien from the practice squad.
Tanney, 6-4, 220 pounds, spent three weeks (Weeks 4-6) on the Colts practice squad before being released on October 20, 2015. Earlier this season he also spent time on the Buffalo Bills practice squad. In 2014, he spent the final two weeks of the regular season on the Titans practice squad. Tanney was on the Dallas Cowboys practice squad for the first 12 weeks of the 2013 season before he was signed to the Cleveland Browns active roster on November 26, 2013. He spent five games on the Browns 53-man roster and did not see any game action. Tanney originally signed with the Kansas City Chiefs as an undrafted free agent on June 5, 2012 and spent his rookie season on the Chiefs Injured Reserve list.
Collegiately, Tanney played in 47 games at Monmouth and set NCAA Division III career records with 14,249 passing yards and 157 touchdowns. He was selected as the Midwest Conference Offensive Player of the Year three times (2008-09, 2011). In 2009, Tanney was named the Melberger Award winner as Division III’s best player after recording 3,856 passing yards and 44 touchdowns.
Southward, 6-2, 210 pounds, was waived by the Atlanta Falcons on November 6, 2015. The Indianapolis native has played in 18 career NFL games and registered 21 tackles (14 solo), 1.0 sack, two passes defensed and one interception. Southward was selected by the Falcons in the third round (68th overall) of the 2014 NFL Draft.
Collegiately, Southward set a school record by playing in 54 consecutive games during his four-year career at Wisconsin. He started 30 games and tallied 152 tackles, 11.5 tackles for loss, four forced fumbles, two interceptions and 11 passes defensed. Southward earned consensus All-Big 10 honorable mention as a junior and a senior.
Blanchard, 6-3, 223 pounds, was signed to the Colts practice squad on October 20, 2015. He has previously spent time on the practice squads of the Cleveland Browns, Carolina Panthers and Chicago Bears since entering the league as an undrafted free agent with the Bears in 2012. Blanchard played in 34 games (25 starts) at Wisconsin-Whitewater and finished as the school’s leader in completion percentage (70.4) after completing 393-of-558 career passes for 5,106 yards, 44 touchdowns and the fewest interceptions (six) in school history.
O’Brien, 6-5, 310 pounds, was signed to the team’s practice squad on October 31, 2015. He spent time with the Colts in training camp before being waived during final cuts on September 5, 2015. He played the last two seasons in the Arena Football League with the Cleveland Gladiators after his collegiate career at Ball State.
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