Indianapolis Colts defensive lineman Dayo Odeyingbo figures to be one of the X-factors for the defense entering the 2022 season.
After his rookie campaign was filled with rehab from Achilles surgery and getting acclimated to life in the NFL, the former second-round pick is ready to focus on making impact plays for his team on the field.
While Odeyingbo hasn’t been a star at camp, he’s been quietly stacking strong days on top of each other during the second week of practices. On Wednesday, that development continued, according to Joel A. Erickson of The Indianapolis Star.
“A full-strength, improved Odeyingbo could be an important asset to the Indianapolis pass rush in a rotational role, and although he has struggled at times in 1-on-1 pass rush drills — he’s still learning how to put moves together — Odeyingbo kept making plays in 11-on-11 work on Wednesday.
Odeyingbo was a part of three “sacks” on Wednesday, showing an ability to disengage from his block while the quarterback is moving in the pocket and working through traffic to get to the passer. The second-year defensive end also had a tackle ofHines at the line of scrimmage, and another tackle-for-loss early in the period while taking a lot of snaps.”
Odeyingbo didn’t get the benefit of going through a full offseason during his rookie season. It’s hard enough for rookies to get acclimated to the NFL life both on and off the field during their first season, and Odeyingbo had to deal with rehab on top of everything.
But the lengthy pass rusher is making noise during camp and is likely in line for a strong rotational role to begin the season. It wouldn’t be surprise if he was a part of the primary group of rushers in obvious pass situations. It’s likely he would work at the three-technique defensive tackle spot while DeForest Bucker would kick to the one-technique in those situations.
Odeyingbo also figures to work on the edge in some situations given his size and length. It’s a role that the Colts have envisioned for him since using a second-round pick to select him in 2021.
The Colts defense is looking to take a step forward in 2022, and that starts with the defensive line.
If Odeyingbo continues to stack days together, their top-five defensive linemen could turn into a lethal unit.