We've been waiting since Saturday to find out details about Colts defensive tackle Arthur Jones' ankle injury, and the early indications weren't good news. Jones was consulting specialists and seeking second opinions, which normally isn't a good thing.
The injury most definitely isn't good news for either Jones or the Colts. According to NFL Media's Ian Rapoport, Jones will need surgery to repair torn ligaments in his ankle and his season could be in jeopardy.
#Colts DL Art Jones needs ankle surgery to repair torn ligaments, sources said. He’s a candidate for IR/designated to return — at best.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 2, 2015
#Colts DL Art Jones saw several docs for his ankle. With torn ligaments, there may be joint damage. They’ll know in surgery, IR is possible— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 2, 2015
That, obviously, is not good news whatsoever. The Indianapolis Star's Stephen Holder yesterday confirmed what many of us had been thinking - that the Colts are considering placing Jones on injured reserve with a designation to return. Based on the severity of the injury, however, Rapoport says that would be the best case scenario. Worst case? Jones misses the entire season.
Losing Jones for any significant period of time - much less the entire season - would be a huge blow to the Colts' defense. We ranked the defensive tackle as the fourth-most important player to the team this year, and the reason is simple: he's the one the Colts were counting on to improve the run defense in 2015. Sure, the signing of Kendall Langford was a good one, and the addition of Nate Irving could help, but a healthy Art Jones would make the biggest difference, and the Colts were counting on it. He was ranked as our second-most important defensive player for the Colts, and now, it sounds like they'll be without him. It's a huge, huge loss.
This was the case last year, as he suffered a high ankle sprain in week two and missed seven of the next eight games and never really got back to 100% for the rest of the season. This year, the team needed a healthy Art Jones up front - but on the first snap of the third preseason game, he was injured. He played one more snap and then left the game.
Last year, it was Ricky Jean Francois filling in for Jones, but he's not around any longer. Now, it will be up to guys like Montori Hughes, Henry Anderson, and Zach Kerr to fill in for Arthur Jones as best as possible. If those three rise to the occasion the Colts might be fine, but there's no way to say it other than this: losing Arthur Jones is a huge loss to the defense, and it sounds like we're not sure when, if at all, he will return this year.