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INDIANAPOLIS – While the Colts have avoided the disastrous injury situation with their starting quarterback, they didn’t get great news on Monday with their top rookie wideout.
Before we get into the fractured hand for Parris Campbell, the positive injury news for the Colts from Monday came with Jacoby Brissett having an MCL sprain.
Brissett was feeling better than he expected to be on Monday and remains optimistic he could play on Sunday against the Dolphins.
Reich and the Colts will have a clearer picture come mid-week, but they aren’t ruling their starting quarterback out for Sunday.
“We are going to have to wait until Wednesday to see how (Brissett) feels,” Reich said of the first practice day of the week. “I think in his mind he felt a little bit better than he expected to feel today, but that’s still a far cry from being able to play the game. He’s optimistic, but you have to wait until Wednesday. We have 48 hours to see how he responds and see if you can even think about practicing and then wrap your mind about playing on Sunday. We are going to have to wait and play that out as the week progresses.”
It was the difficulty in making necessary lateral movements that kept Brissett from returning in Sunday’s loss to the Steelers.
If Brissett can’t go against the Dolphins, it sounds like Chad Kelly would be promoted to the active roster to backup Brian Hoyer.
“That would likely be the plan, yes,” Reich confirmed on Monday of Kelly becoming the backup.
After reviewing Sunday’s tape, Reich remained pleased with the performance Hoyer gave the Colts.
For a backup entering mid-game, it was pretty impressive performance, considering the lack of first-team offense preparation he had coming into the Pittsburgh game.
“When you look back at the tape, he played pretty well, really well, in fact,” Reich said of Hoyer going 17-of-26 for 168 yards, 3 touchdowns and 1 interception against Pittsburgh. “Obviously, the pick six was kind of the big blemish on the ‘scorecard.’
“But I think the reason (Hoyer played well), he’s played a lot of football. He’s a smart player. He’s really assimilated well to the offense. And most of those plays he really hasn’t repped, because he wasn’t here for Training Camp and Jacoby takes all the reps. And that’s pretty much the standard protocol for all teams. You’ve got to get good mental reps. He’s pro. He’s done a good job of that and he’s a talented football player, so he was able to come in and make some plays.”
Here are some other tidbits from Reich’s Monday conference call:
- It was WR-Parris Campbell leaving Sunday’s loss to the Steelers late with a hand injury. Well, the rookie had to have surgery on his fractured hand Monday and will “miss some time” with eight games remaining this season. “Not exactly sure how much, but he’ll miss some time,” Reich said of Campbell on Monday. “The plan right now is not to put him on IR. We’ll see how this progresses and how quickly he heals. Then hopefully we’ll get him back.” If Campbell were to go on IR, he would miss the rest of the regular season, but could return in the playoffs. Without Campbell, the Colts will be down the 3 wideouts we expected to be WR1 (T.Y. Hilton), WR2 (Devin Funchess) and WR3 (Parris Campbell) this season, when the Colts take on the Dolphins this Sunday. The Campbell injury comes after he’s dealt with a hamstring injury and a hernia injury already this year. Campbell was key on Sunday though, with 8 touches for 90 yards. ” I think we saw a little taste (Sunday) of his explosiveness and just how raw he is,” Reich said of Campbell. “You can feel the energy when he has the ball and the explosiveness. I thought (Sunday) he did fairly well. It’s just unfortunate to get this fractured hand. Thankfully, it’s not anything that is catastrophic and hopefully it heals quickly.”
- As the Colts look for wideout help right now, Zach Pascal, Deon Cain, Chester Rogers and Ashton Dullin are the 4 healthy wideouts on the 53-man roster. Marcus Johnson and Chad Williams are two wideouts currently on the practice squad. Given the special teams value for guys like Pascal, Rogers and Dulin, the Colts could be looking at having to promote one of those practice squad wideouts this week. Devin Funchess has to sit out one more game, and T.Y. Hilton’s recovery is supposed to last deeper into the month.
- The Colts will not be making any change in their placekicking situation this week, after Adam Vinatieri has missed 10 total kicks this season in 8 games. “Lot of confidence in Adam,” Reich reiterated on Monday. “No plans to do anything different.” After reviewing the film on Monday, Reich had a more detailed answer as to why Vinatieri missed a 43-yard field goal with barely over a minute on Sunday. “We all saw it. He got the laces,” Reich said. “It was a fluke. (Rigoberto Sanchez) and (Luke Rhodes), as a snapper/holder combination, I’d put them up against anybody. Luke is a great snapper. Rigo is an unbelievable holder. I know I held for a lot of years. I haven’t talked to Rigo, but that kick, the way the ball got down, I’ll just say this, it made it a lot tougher on the kicker. It made it a lot tougher on Adam. There’s not very many times that you see a kicker actually kick the laces straight on. It just doesn’t happen very often. The only time it normally happens (for a holder to miss spinning the laces), is when you hit a blind spot and catch the ball and you go to put it down and there’s a split second where you can’t locate the laces. That doesn’t happen often. But it happens once every 100 times. It was just a fluke. Unfortunately, Adam had to kick the laces and that does play into it in my mind.” In case you missed it, Pat McAfee detailed on Monday the laces issue and where the blame should fall.
- Second-year defensive tackle Tyquan Lewis was a healthy scratch on Sunday after having fully participated in all 3 practices last week and was not listed on the final injury report status of the week. This season, Lewis has been a healthy scratch twice, dealt with an ankle injury that sidelined him for 4 games and recorded just a half tackle in the 2 games that he played. “We still have a lot of hope and belief in Tyquan,” Reich said on Monday. “But it’s just taken a lot longer to work through all the injury stuff. Then what happens in the meantime is a lot of guys are getting reps. I think he’s getting real close and we are looking forward to him stringing together good practices together. You know how we feel about practices and the importance of it and practicing at game speed. We are just continuing to look for all of our players stringing together good practices at game speed to give us the confidence and know that a player is ready, whether he’s coming back from an injury, like Tyquan, or is just ready in general.”
- On Monday evening, the Colts continued their search for help in the defensive line interior. They waived DT-Carl Davis (who they signed last month) and claimed DT-Kyle Peko off waivers from the Bills. At 6-1 and 305 pounds, Peko has played in 11 career games for the Bills (2018-19) and Broncos (2016-18). Since the start of October, the Colts have brought in 3 new defensive tackles in an effort to bolster that position. Clearly, the staff isn’t pleased with how that position has played/developed in 2019.