By Danny Cox
Against the Kansas City Chiefs, quarterback Andrew Luck completed passes to six different receivers. Three different players carried the ball for the Colts as they put together the second biggest comeback in the history of the NFL playoffs.
If they are going to keep pace with the explosive New England Patriots, the Colts are going to need to be at full strength, because the Pats won't allow what the Chiefs did.
Wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey is pretty much not going to be on the field for the Colts and he shouldn't be expected to be. He's been hampered by a hamstring injury for weeks now, and the chances of his appearing in the Divisional Round game of the playoffs are virtually nil.
Da'Rick Rogers would be next in line to start opposite T.Y. Hilton, but LaVon Brazill will likely get the start.
Hilton had a career game against the Chiefs as he caught 13 balls for 224 yards and two touchdowns. If Heyward-Bey was healthy, there is really not much of a chance that the Patriots could stop them. For this Saturday, the Colts are going to have to hope that Brazill, Rogers, and others can pick up the slack.
The only other offensive player listed on the injury report this week is that of backup offensive lineman Khaled Holmes, who is dealing with a calf injury. He was limited on Wednesday, but a full-go at practice the rest of the week and is good.
Indy has three defensive players listed on the injury report this week, but they are all probable and will be ready to go against the Patriots.
Nose tackle Aubrayo Franklin missed Wednesday's practice, but for no other reason than to get some added rest. The veteran deserves it and practiced in full for the rest of the week.
Reserve linebacker Josh McNary suffered a concussion last week, but he practiced in full all week and will be ready to backup Jerrell Freeman or others as needed.
Starting safety LaRon Landry was also a full participant in practice all this week for the Colts. There were some serious concerns after he left the game against the Chiefs with a concussion. He should be ready to go after practicing all week and defensive coordinator Greg Manusky saying Landry looked "ready to roll."
Landry's presence is highly important considering the Colts lost starting cornerback Greg Toler against the Chiefs after he re-aggravated a lingering groin injury. It had hampered him since October and the Colts finally just placed him on season-ending injured reserve.
- WR Darrius Heyward-Bey
- NT Aubrayo Franklin - Rest
- C/G Khaled Holmes - Calf
- S LaRon Landry - Concussion
- LB Josh McNary - Concussion
For more news and updates about the NFL Playoffs, visit NFL Playoffs Central.
Danny Cox knows a little something about the NFL, whether it means letting you know what penalty will come from the flag just thrown on the field or quickly spouting off who the Chicago Bears drafted in the first round of the 1987 draft (Jim Harbaugh). He plans on bringing you the best news, previews, recaps, and anything else that may come along with the exciting world of the National Football League. Danny is a freelance writer covering all things NFL. His work can be found on Examiner.com.
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