When starting center Khaled Holmes went down on the first drive of the first preseason game, we all feared the worst. His pounding the ground, his grabbing his leg, his not being able to get up and having to be helped off the field - we all feared it might be the next in a string of season-ending injuries to key players for the Colts.
Well you can breath easier, Colts fans. According to Colts head coach Chuck Pagano after practice today, Holmes has a left ankle sprain that will likely cause him to miss two to three weeks, but the team and Pagano expects him to be back for the season opener against the Denver Broncos.
While Holmes doesn't have much NFL experience at all, the backup options were clearly much worse. Jonotthan Harrison had struggles in Thursday night's game, and so did FN Lutz. The Colts signed Thomas Austin last night for depth and were working Jack Mewhort at center some today, but clearly the best option was to hope that Holmes could come back. I do think this will cause the Colts to be a bit more serious about their backup center, though, and I'd expect either Harrison or Austin to make the roster as depth and insurance, plus continue to see Mewhort working at center a bit in practice.
Pagano also gave updates on other injured players. We mentioned yesterday about Xavier Nixon's tweet about heading into surgery, and thankfully the surgery was just a knee scope and he's expected to miss three weeks. Nixon is very valuable depth along the line. And then last night the team waived-injured outside linebacker Daniel Adongo and defensive lineman Jeris Pendleton, and they're both expected to clear waivers and revert to the team's IR. Pagano said that Adongo ruptured his biceps and that Pendleton tore his ACL.
While the news about Adongo and Pendleton is rough, we already knew they were out for the year. The news about both Nixon and Holmes is encouraging, especially considering what might have been. Holmes looked good in the limited time in his first preseason game, and the expectation is that he'll be back out there for the Colts when they head to Denver. And that would be really good news.