It has been a lengthy injury report for the Colts this week, and that has led to four players already being ruled out for Sunday's game against the Washington Redskins. During his press conference today, Colts head coach Chuck Pagano ruled out tight end Dwayne Allen (ankle), offensive linemen Xavier Nixon (foot) and Hugh Thornton (knee), and linebacker Andy Studebaker (hamstring). Furthermore, safety Colt Anderson (knee) and cornerback Darius Butler (knee) are questionable for the game against the Redskins.
For Allen, it will be the second consecutive game he has missed after injuring his ankle in the loss to the Patriots. He's one of the most important players on the Colts' offense and his presence will be missed this week, just as it was a week ago. Allen leads the team with seven touchdown receptions and he has a big impact in several ways. He didn't practice at all this week and it's not a surprise that he's not ready to play yet, though it will definitely impact the Colts.
The team will also be without two linemen in Nixon and Thornton. Thornton, their starting right guard, was injured during last week's win after he was beyond terrible in the first half. Chuck Pagano declared him week-to-week earlier this week, which almost always means the player will miss some time, and at that point it was a question of whether it would be Xavier Nixon or Joe Reitz starting at right guard. Now, there's really no discussion since Nixon was ruled out. Reitz, who started at right tackle last week, will almost certainly start at right guard this week (and he's a much better guard than tackle).
Andy Studebaker will also be out on Sunday. He's a backup linebacker and a key special teams player. Especially if Colt Anderson, who is questionable, doesn't play, then the Colts' special teams unit will look very, very different on Sunday. The team released Loucheiz Purifoy earlier this week, and then they won't have Andy Studebaker and very well could be without Colt Anderson as well. For a unit that has been so spectacular this season, they could be missing some key players this weekend.
Darius Butler is a hard one to figure out because he was a full participant in practice on Wednesday, a limited participant on Thursday, and then didn't participate at all on Friday. Either he injured his knee this week or it just got worse this week, and we don't really know for sure what's going on with that situation. What we do know, however, is that Butler is questionable, and if he can't go the Colts will be without their slot cornerback.
The good news out of all of this is that right tackle Gosder Cherilus (shoulder), cornerback Vontae Davis (foot), cornerback Josh Gordy (back), defensive end Cory Redding (knee), and cornerback Greg Toler (concussion) are all probable, so while the injury report is a long one and while there are four players out and two others questionable, there is certainly some good news throughout it all.