Jean Francois, whom the Colts signed to a four-year, $22 million contract in 2013, was scheduled to make $5.5 million next season. Indianapolis will save $4.875 million in salary-cap space by releasing him.
Jean Francois started 23 of the 26 games he played with the Colts, but he saw his role reduced some last season with the addition of Arthur Jones. Jean Francois finished with 54 tackles and 5.5 sacks in two seasons.
Jean Francois is the second player from the 2013 free agent group that general manager Ryan Grigson signed to be released this offseason. Starting safety LaRon Landry was released on Feb. 11 after two disappointing seasons.
The Colts, who reached the AFC Championship Game last season, need two starting safeties, a pass-rusher, a defensive lineman and a running back.