ESPN's Adam Schefter is reporting that WR Reggie Wayne is done for the year with a torn ACL. The injury was suffered during the 4th quarter of last night's 39-33 victory over the Denver Broncos. It was, similar to Anthony Gonzalez's knee injury in 2009, a non-contact injury. Wayne had started 189-consecutive games, dating back to his rookie year, when he missed time due to a PCL strain.
No word yet on what, if any moves the Colts plan to make to fill the enormous void Wayne's absence creates.
1) Is this the end? Many are speculating that an ACL injury for a 34-year old WR is a career-ender. I'm not so sure. Sure, for some – especially those who rely on speed, quickness, agility, athleticism (insert 15 other words that mean the same thing) – it would be a major roadblock towards a comeback. But Reggie isn't one of those guys. He relies on brains, route running, and an ability to make tough catches in traffic.
His days as a #1 are over, but those days were probably already behind them as Reggie was more of a possession receiver this year. He could, if he chooses, still come back and make big contributions in that possession receiver role.
2) Where do we go from here? I think the Colts have enough speed and play-making ability on the outside with Hilton, DHB and Brazill. What they are lacking now – with both Wayne AND Allen on IR – is someone who can make the tough catches over-the-middle and on 3rd-down. If Grigson is looking for a trade, that's what he should be looking for.
The first name that comes to mind is Atlanta TE Tony Gonzalez. While the TE has said he doesn't want to "jump ship," maybe he could be convinced to go on one last run with a young phenom.
Outside of a trade, look for WR Griff Whalen to be promoted from the Practice Squad. While not supremely gifted, Whalen is more of a possession guy and is better suited to fill the current needs.
I do expect Grigson to at least explore the trade market. Will it be a big name? Probably. That's what Grigson does.
We'll have more on this as it develops.