NFL+ Free 7-Day Trial! (320X50)

Indianapolis Colts' 2022 training camp preview: Defensive Tackle – Colts Wire

The Indianapolis Colts are just over a week away from the start of training camp at Westfield where the interior defensive line will boast some strong competition.
The starting spots will remain the same in Gus Bradley’s new defense. It’s the depth roles that will be the ones to watch when the team officially returns from summer break.
Not many additions were made to the interior defensive line outside of two intriguing Day 3 picks in the 2022 NFL draft, and this unit will have a lot of say in the type of production the entire defense has in 2022.
Be sure to check out the other position previews ahead of training camp:
As training camp is set to begin July 27, here’s a preview of the defensive tackles for the Colts:
AP Photo/Zach Bolinger
The leader of the group and the engine of the defense, Buckner has been the biggest priority for opposing offenses to focus on over the last two seasons. He was an All-Pro during his first season with the Colts in 2020 and even though his production slipped a bit in 2021, Buckner still had a strong year.
Entering Year 3 of his deal with the Colts, Buckner needs to return to that 2020 form if the defense is to make that leap forward into a higher tier. He can certainly do that from a pass-rushing perspective considering the aggressiveness of Bradley’s scheme.
Getting some help from the edge rushers should also benefit the veteran defensive tackle, who could very well be a captain again.
AP Photo/Zach Bolinger
One of the most underrated players on the entire roster, Stewart is just now beginning to get the love he deserves from the fanbase. The national media may not have caught on yet, but they will soon.
Stewart has been working as the starting one-technique defensive tackle for the last three seasons and has quickly become one of the best at the position. Don’t let that fool you, though, he’s far more than just a run-stopper. Stewart’s skill set often shows a talented pass rusher when he’s not opening lanes for other rushers.
It will be interesting to see how the spread of the defensive line will impact Stewart’s alignment. He may see some extra work outside of lining up over the center. But he’s a key factor in the defensive line considering his ability to stop the run and his ability to hold blockers so others can get through to their gaps.
Syndication: The Indianapolis Star
We could have included Odeyingbo with the edge rushers as well because he’s going to see equal time working from the three-technique defensive tackle spot as much as he will from the edge. The Colts see a big year coming up for the 2021 second-round pick.
Odeyingbo spent the majority of his rookie campaign working back from Achilles surgery. He didn’t get on the field until halfway through the regular season and then saw 27% of the snaps when he did return. But now with a full offseason under his belt, “Hurricane Dayo” is ready to torment opposing backfields.
Considering his burst, length and abilities as a pass rusher, we should expect a quasi-breakout from the Vanderbilt product. He still needs to earn that versatile role he’s set up for, but the optimism is rightfully high when it comes to his potential.
AP Photo/Butch Dill
Johnson will be an interesting player to watch during training camp and the preseason. The Colts used a fifth-round pick on him during the 2022 NFL draft with the expectation that he will eventually develop into a strong contributor from the interior.
It isn’t clear yet where Johnson will play the majority of his snaps. After the draft, Chris Ballard said he’s likely to work both at the three-technique and one-technique spots. Even though he’s an older prospect coming from a small school, there is a lot of upside with Johnson’s game given his elite athleticism.
He may not make an impact right away, especially if the others in the room stay healthy, but Johnson has a shot to work into a rotational role immediately while his game develops.
Syndication: The Enquirer
Brooks might be the biggest sleeper in the rookie draft class for the Colts. He was an older prospect and his size may be the reason he ultimately dropped to the sixth round, but his athleticism and production in big games show the Colts may have gotten a steal.
Brooks will be competing with Johnson and others for the fourth spot in the defensive line room. He has a good chance of winning that role with a strong showing during the preseason. Brooks is a strong, explosive pass rusher who may be further along in his development than we might initially imagine.
The Cincinnati product has a lot to prove after falling to Day 3, and he could wind up being a pleasant surprise by the end of training camp.
AP Photo/Michael Conroy
Williams enters his third season with the Colts after signing with the team as an undrafted rookie free agent following the 2020 NFL draft. He’s held mostly a depth role on the practice squad while getting some run during the 2021 season.
Williams may have a limited ceiling as a pass rusher, but he proved enough to make the initial 53-man roster during the 2021 season. He will have some stiff competition for the final two spots, but don’t count him out just yet.
Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
The Colts signed McIntosh to a futures deal this offseason after he spent time with the New York Giants. A former fifth-round pick out of Miami (FL), McIntosh faces an uphill battle to make the roster. However, the Colts may keep him on the practice squad if he shows enough promise during training camp and the preseason games.
AP Photo/Ron Cortes
One of the later additions when it came to the undrafted rookie free agents, Patton comes from a small program at Texas State. He has decent athleticism but will have a difficult time earning a roster spot given the limited places available in the room.
Sign up for the Colts Wire newsletter to get our top stories in your inbox every morning
Previewing the Colts interior offensive line entering training camp.
Colts Wire
© Copyright Colts Wire 2022
USA Today Sports
Powered by VIP
Please enter an email address.
Thanks for signing up.
Please check your email for a confirmation.
Something went wrong.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *