(QUEST – Questionable 50-75% chance; PROB – Probable 75+% chance)
Overall the news is good. Most of the offensive line seems to be closing in on a comeback who had a chance to. The injury to the LBs seems to have been merely precautionary. Indications are strong that Ryan Diem will be back in the starting lineup regardless of whether Mike Pollak is healthy or not. Quinn Ojinnaka is also a strong candidate for being recovered enough to return to the field.
The major concerns lie with Drake Nevis, Anthony Castonzo, and Jeff Saturday. Saturday was a full participant yesterday, but has three days this week inactive due to a knee issue. It would not be the first time that a multi-year veteran has started on one day or less of practice in a week (Charlie Johnson did it regularly last year, and Diem has done it once this year), but it remains a concern. If Saturday is unable to go, it will shed quite a bit of light on the Colts’ thought process though. Will they entrust the reigns of the offensive line to the majorly disappointing and disastrously inconsistent Mike Pollak, or will Jamey Richard once again usurp Pollak to become the primary backup center? Even if Saturday starts, his knee will be an issue to watch during the game.
Anthony Castonzo and Drake Nevis were both limited this whole week, but according to Phil B. Wilson of Indy Star, it is highly likely that both return to the field this week. Castonzo seems to be a solid option, but there is still doubt with Ryan Diem still not knowing for sure exactly whether he will start at RG or RT. If it is RT, it likely means Linkenbach is at LT, ergo Castonzo is out or sitting.
As for Nevis, while he has been upbeat recently about coming back, the fact is that injuries are not going to dictate the inactive last week as they have done recently. With only 4 obvious inactives at this point, Nevis may fall prey to there being a log jam at DT as it is with Mathews and Muir having come in for Foster and Nevis already. With White being an obvious inactive, the Colts won’t get by with keeping Gonzalez out of the picture this week, so the deeper positions are targets for inactive cuts.
QB Peyton Manning (Neck)
OT Joe Reitz (Knee)
WR Blair White (Knee)
CB Terrence Johnson (Hamstring)
WR Anthony Gonzalez (Coach’s Decision – Its the Colts, they’ve shown they don’t like him)
CB Jacob Lacey (Coach’s Decision – See Anthony Gonzalez)
DT Drake Nevis (Back)
DE Jerry Hughes (Coach’s Decision)
OG Mike Pollak (Hamstring)
OT Quinn Ojinnaka (Shoulder)
OG Jamey Richard (Coach’s Decision)