Edwin Jackson Named as ‘Most Underutilized’ Member of Colts

According to ESPN Insider (subscription) and in combination with Pro Football Focus, Indianapolis Colts inside linebacker Edwin Jackson is the most underutilized player on the team in a breakdown of all the NFL’s 32 franchises respectively:

Indianapolis Colts

Linebacker Edwin Jackson

Pro Football Focus: Jackson has only just started to see playing time. With three tackles resulting in a defensive stop from 29 snaps against the run, he has a run-stop percentage of 10.3 percent, which would rank 16th among inside linebackers had he played enough snaps to qualify.

NFL Nation: Jackson is next in line in what has basically been a revolving door at inside linebacker next to veteran D’Qwell Jackson. Nate Irving, Sio Moore, Antonio Morrison and Josh McNary have all had their shot at getting significant playing time at that position. The Colts are looking to get younger, and they want an athletic player who can stop the run and also drop back into coverage against tight ends. A second-year player, Jackson is taking advantage of the extra snaps he has received in a recent weeks, and those snaps will probably increase going forward, barring a dropoff in production from him. — Mike Wells

Originally signed to the Colts practice squad in December of last season before inking a reserve/future contract a month later, Jackson has flashed a bit with his speed, tenacity, and hard-hitting ability in recent weeks–plus who can forget that hair?

Oct 30, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indianapolis Colts linebacker Edwin Jackson (53) celebrates after recovering a fumble against the Kansas City Chiefs at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports

Those are Bob Sanders-esque style points, right there. 

With the Colts shuffling through the likes of Nate Irving, Sio Moore, Josh McNary, and Antonio Morrison to replace departed starter Jerrell Freeman, it’s been Jackson who’s actually shown the most promise as of late this season.

The 6’0″, 230 pound inside linebacker received his 1st career start in Week 8 of this season against the Kansas City Chiefs and played 46 defensive snaps (62% of defensive plays). However, he played just 10 defensive snaps against the pass-happy Green Bay Packers (14%) a week later, as the Colts defense went to more of a pure pass-coverage personnel grouping.

Nevertheless, it appears that the Colts are starting to showcase Jackson more alongside starting veteran inside linebacker D’Qwell Jackson compared to alternatives–at least in their run-oriented defensive personnel packages.

It makes sense too, as the younger Jackson has so far provided much needed speed and athleticism to a 2nd level that was sorely lacking it prior.

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