The Indianapolis Colts’ roller coaster ride of a season took a turn for the worst early Saturday when head coach Chuck Pagano announced that starting right guard Jack Mewhort would be placed on injured reserve.
Mewhort, who was drafted out of Ohio State in 2014, has been one of the bright spots on the Colts’ developing offensive line when healthy.
After reportedly experiencing a flare-up in his previously-injured knee during practice, Mewhort will undergo another procedure. The injury comes at a pivotal time for both Mewhort and the Colts’ offense.
Consequences for Mewhort
Mewhort is in the final year of his rookie deal and will be an unrestricted free agent at the season’s end. After missing six games last season and over half of this season, it stands to reason that Chris Ballard may look to move on from the 26-year old lineman. If not, his lack of durability could potentially lower the price tag for the Colts this offseason.
Consequences for Indianapolis
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On the other side of the equation, the injury comes at the worst possible time for the Colts. Indianapolis will face the AFC South division rival Tennessee Titans on Monday Night Football in a game that will be pivotal for the Colts’ 2017 playoff hopes.
If the Colts can manage to win this game they would head into Week 7 at 3-3. If the Colts are defeated they face a much more unfavorable reality of 2-4.
More importantly, the Colts would like to have their best offensive lineman healthy to protect their franchise quarterback Andrew Luck. Luck could make his debut against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 7 or the Cinncinati Bengals in Week 8. Mewhort would be sorely missed in these matchups as the Jaguars are currently tied for first in the NFL for sacks with the Bengals sitting at third.
Finally, Indianapolis will likely fill Mewhort’s spot with Kyle Kalis, Mike Person or Le’Raven Clark as potential replacements. This injury could very well signify the final straw for this year’s Indianapolis Colts team.