Colts pick Ball State lineman Danny Pinter in 5th round

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SOUTH BEND, IN – SEPTEMBER 08: Danny Pinter #75 of the Ball State Cardinals at Notre Dame Stadium (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

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INDIANAPOLIS – The Indianapolis Colts have begun chipping away at their nine-player draft class by signing offensive lineman Danny Pinter.

A fifth-round pick out of Ball State, Pinter is due a four-year, $3.643 million contract with a $348,696 signing bonus under the NFL’s rookie wage scale.

The 6-4, 306-pound Pinter attended South Bend Adams H.S. before moving on to Ball State. He began his college career as a tight end before transitioning to right tackle. He appeared in 43 games with 35 starts, including 24 at right tackle.

The Colts anticipate Pinter initially providing depth at guard and center.

“I love Danny, I’m not going to lie to y’all,’’ general manager Chris Ballard said after the draft. “Actually we were trying to move up to get him. I probably won’t ever give y’all this much insight, but for like 30 minutes we were trying to move up and just couldn’t get up to get him.’’

Pinter first caught the Colts’ eye at the NFLPA game, then reinforced his status with a solid showing at the NFL Scouting Combine.

“Do I think he can play some tackle?’’ Ballard said. “Yes, but center/guard is where I think he’s going to make his hay in the league. And you want to talk about character? Believe me, this guy’s got blue character and he fits our culture. He has the traits we look for in offensive linemen.’’

You can follow Mike Chappell on Twitter at @mchappell51.

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