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Colts' Julian Blackmon: Safety position this offseason is 'how it was for the running backs a year ago' 

The offseason began with a hoard of veteran safeties hitting the market as teams purged the position.

The glut of free-agent safeties made it difficult for the big-money paydays to roll in. Xavier McKinney inked for $16.75 million per year in Green Bay, and the Patriots recently agreed to a four-year contract with Kyle Duggar worth $14.5 million per season, but the multi-year deals worth heaps of cash have been few and far between.

Take Julian Blackmon, coming off a career year in Indy. The former third-round pick couldn't find long-term security, signing a one-year deal worth up to $7.7 million to remain with the Colts.

"It's a one-year deal, and for me, I feel like my value is worth more than one year, but unfortunately, we all saw how the market went," he told Indy reporters Tuesday. "So it was what I was dealt. I'm happy with how it ended up."

Blackmon was glad to return to Indy, where he knows the system under Gus Bradley and believes he can play his best football, but his hope to find long-term security went unrequited.

"This was home. This is the place where it started, and this is the place I want to finish if I can," he said. "Everybody knows how free agency went this year for safeties. We just wanted to be patient with the whole process, and we were able to come up with something that everybody was happy with."

Blackmon at least landed a gig before offseason workouts began. Safeties like Justin Simmons, Eddie Jackson, Quandre Diggs, Micah Hyde, Jamal Adams and others remain unsigned.

Blackmon compared the plight of safeties to how running backs have fared the last several seasons.

"I think it was something similar to how it was for the running backs a year ago," he said. "It just kind of shows you that you've got to be prepared for anything. It's one of those things where you can never truly say that you've got it. Especially when there's so much talent in the NFL. For me, it's just one of those things where I just tried to take it for what it was. It was a unique situation, especially going into my first free agency."

Positional value coupled with the market saturation left plenty of safeties out in the cold this offseason. More will find landing spots after the draft and as we get closer to training camp, but likely not for the big money they'd become used to seeing.

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