The Indianapolis Colts announced on Saturday that the team has placed pass rusher Kemoko Turay on PUP to start the 2020 regular season—which means he’s inactive for at least the first 6 weeks:
So, at first glance, the big news on Colts' moves is Kemoko Turay going to reserve/PUP. That parks him there for at least six weeks.— Stephen Holder (@HolderStephen) September 5, 2020
The Colts 3rd-year pass rusher suffered a season-ending broken ankle in Week 5 of last season on the road against the Kansas City Chiefs.
While Turay’s early season status is a blow to the Colts pass rush, the encouraging news is that he has been making progress—and was recently seen working drills with pass rushing mentor Robert Mathis just a few days ago at team training camp practice.
Per Pro Football Focus (subscription), Turay was their 3rd highest graded pass rusher last season with a +91.0 pass rushing grade—albeit in limited action. He had 2 sacks and 14 total QB pressures in 69 total pass rushing snaps during 2019 before his season was cut short.
If fully healthy, Turay has a chance to be a breakout speed rusher for the Colts defense.
However, in his absence, the Colts will presumably turn to the likes of Denico Autry and Tyquan Lewis on running downs—while rotational pass rusher Ben Banogu may presumably spell them as a situational speed rusher.
It’s not necessarily a great development for the Colts defense, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that Turay has suffered any sort of setback with his ankle either.
The Colts may simply be electing to be cautious with their young pass rusher—thinking of his long-term career and playing potential over any sort of short-term gain.