From Yale to NFL for Colts RB Tyler Varga?

Tyler Varga had 35 total yards and a touchdown in the Colts' preseason game against the Rams. AP Photo/Tom Gannam

INDIANAPOLIS – Indianapolis Colts running back Tyler Varga played was a three-time All-Ivy League player at Yale and finished fourth in rushing yards in school history.

Varga is about to play an important game in determining his future He probably will get plenty of carries in the Colts’ preseason finale against the Cincinnati Bengals on Thursday.

“I just try to play my hardest every single game, and I think my effort is evident on the field,” he said.

Varga is in the mix to at least make the practice squad for the Colts. And he may have a chance to make the 53-man roster depending on how many running backs the Colts keep. Frank Gore, Daniel "Boom" Herron and rookie Josh Robinson are locks on the roster. Varga will be competing against Vick Ballard and Zurlon Tipton if Indianapolis decides to keep four running backs. Varga would have the edge based off preseason performances if that’s the case.

Ballard, who has carried the ball only two times in preseason games, has injured both of his hamstrings since the start of training camp, which makes it difficult for the coaching staff to get a true assessment of whether he can contribute.

Tipton has rushed 20 times for 51 yards in the preseason. Varga made his case when he picked up 35 yards on his nine touches (16 yards rushing and 19 yards receiving) and a touchdown in last weekend’s game against the St. Louis Rams.

“I try to hustle on special teams and I think I’ve gotten noticed for that,” Varga said. “(Saturday) some good things happened and I’m really grateful for the opportunity.”

Varga had many of the veterans, including Gore, standing on the sideline cheering him on as he bounced off St. Louis defenders.

“You like to see that out of guys like Tyler,” Gore said. “They’re out there fighting for their job trying to impress the right people. It was great to see.”

Now Varga will make his final plea to the Colts that he deserves a spot on the roster or practice squad.