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Colts left tackle Anthony Castonzo "optimistic" he will return this week

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Colts left tackle Anthony Castonzo, who has missed the past three games with an MCL sprain, said today that he is "optimistic" that he will return this week.

Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

The Indianapolis Colts were playing without five starters on Sunday as they were embarrassed by the Jacksonville Jaguars, and besides for Andrew Luck, perhaps the most notable absence was that of left tackle Anthony Castonzo.

Missing his third straight game with an MCL sprain suffered in the team's week 11 win over the Atlanta Falcons, Castonzo said today that he is "optimistic" about returning this week.

Getting their starting left tackle back would certainly be a huge boost for a struggling Colts offensive line, to be sure.  With Castonzo out of the lineup, Joe Reitz moved from right tackle to left tackle while rookie Denzelle Good moved into the starting lineup at right tackle.  And though it hasn't been all because of those two, the offensive line has really struggled in recent weeks after playing solid football for much of the season.  The tackles have struggled too, including on Sunday.  According to Pro Football Focus, both Reitz and Good each allowed five quarterback pressures on the day, proving to be questionable bookends to the line in pass protection.  It's easy to point to the loss of Castonzo and the shuffling that occurred as a result of it as the reason for many of the struggles now, so the hope is that when he returns things will improve.