Jonathan Taylor and the Indianapolis Colts have struggled to find any consistency this season, especially on the offensive side of the ball. They are looking for a spark, which they were hoping would come from inserting Sam Ehlinger into the starting lineup at quarterback, replacing veteran Matt Ryan.
The results weren’t great in his first outing, as the Colts lost 17-16 to the Washington Commanders. However, Ehlinger did do everything he could to get the team in position to win, as they were up 16-10 before Washington went down the field on their final drive of the game to take the lead.
The sixth-round pick from the 2021 NFL Draft was honest about his performance, as Indianapolis left a lot of points on the board with turnovers and missed opportunities near the goal line. But, one of the biggest issues that the Colts had to overcome and will be tasked with managing the remainder of the season is the health of running back Jonathan Taylor.
Taylor missed two games earlier this season because of an ankle injury and he re-aggravated it against the Commanders. He was able to come back into the game but there are certainly some concerns about it as he was held out of practice on Wednesday.
In addition to missing practice, the Colts also signed running back Jordan Wilkins to the practice squad, which could be an indication that the coaching staff believes Taylor will have to miss more time. As Ian Rapoport shared, this could be something Indianapolis has to navigate for some time.
With Nyheim Hines on his way to the Buffalo Bills following a deadline trade, the Colts are certainly thin in their backfield. They did get Zack Moss back in the trade, but it will take some time for him to get up to speed and learn the team’s playbook.
If Taylor is unable to go, expect to see a heavy dose of Deon Jackson once again. Jackson was spectacular in spot duty earlier this season when Taylor was sidelined and could be in for a big role once again this week against the New England Patriots.
Even if Taylor suits up, the team could scale back his workload in hopes of keeping him healthy, which could lead to more weekly touches for Jackson and eventually Moss. Taylor is an integral part of this offense and the Colts need him healthy if they are to have any hopes of turning things around.