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Could rookie Tyquan Lewis give the Colts’ struggling defensive line the lift it needs?

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Goodyear Cotton Bowl - USC v Ohio State Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images

The Colts jumped out to a great start to their season in terms of production from their defensive line. They got to opposing quarterbacks regularly and early on were near the top of the league in terms of sacks. Over the last several weeks, that has started to dry up.

Guys missing time and others getting injured has meant more snaps played and players who aren’t as fresh across the defensive line. Long drives kept alive by poor play on the back end certainly hasn’t done anything to help them out either.

With the Colts’ bye week in the rear view mirror, they may have help on the way. Rookie Tyquan Lewis can be activated this week and could play against the Jaguars.

The Colts have been pretty consistent in playing things close to the vest in terms of players returning from injury, so don’t expect Reich to give much away prior to when he has to. If Lewis is able to play though, his potential impact should not be discounted. He is 1 of 4 2nd-round picks from the 2018 draft, and all three others are valuable starters.

Stephen Holder has said several times, most recently on the Colts’ Cast last week that he has heard from some pretty high ranking Colts officials who believe that Lewis can have the same kind of impact on the defense that Darius Leonard has had. That’s a tall order because Leonard’s season has been phenomenal, but given the successes of this draft class, it certainly isn’t outside the realm of possibility.

Lewis ended his time at Ohio State as their 5th player all-time in sacks. That’s pretty impressive given their history and the talent that has come out of the Ohio State football programs of the past. Production isn’t everything at the college level, but it also isn’t nothing.

One impressive thing about this coaching staff is that they have done a great job of fitting players to their desired scheme this season. Lewis may start off as primarily a situational pass rusher or get snaps at the 3 technique on obvious passing downs, but getting a young playmaker in the game to keep the line fresh will help them down the stretch.

If Tyquan Lewis proves to be what the Colts think he can be, they may be looking at a player who can provide a spark that ignites this defense as they hit the back stretch of their schedule. They’ll need it, because if they want to be relevant this season, every game is important from here on out.