In the first quarter of last night’s game against the Houston Texans, Colts tight end Dwayne Allen suffered an ankle injury and did not return. The Colts did not have information regarding the severity of the injury readily available this afternoon when meeting with the media, but it appears they now know.
According to NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport, after Allen’s MRI results came back it was determined that he has a sprained ankle and is week-to-week. Rapoport said that it is likely that Allen will miss some time.
When a player receives a week-to-week designation from the Colts, it most certainly means that he will miss time. We’ve seen the time players miss greatly vary over the years, so all that can truly be ascertained from the designation is that the player will miss some time but that it’s not serious enough to warrant injured reserve. So in that regard it’s good news for the Colts, but it means that they’ll be without their top tight end for the foreseeable future.
That’s not nearly as frightening now as it was entering the season, however, as Jack Doyle has really stepped up this year to become a key part of the offense. Actually, Doyle ranks second on the team in receptions (20), third on the team in yards (208), and tied for first in touchdowns (3). Doyle has proven to be a perfectly capable replacement for Allen while the latter gets healthy, but the big question for the Colts becomes the depth of the position. Erik Swoope made a couple of nice grabs yesterday and finished with two catches for 42 yards, but those were the first two catches of his NFL career. So Swoope will be the number two, but he’s very inexperienced. The team will likely need to add a third tight end, then, and it’s possible that they will promote Mike Miller from the practice squad, as he’s been there all year. If they do that, though, it will make the position even more inexperienced behind Doyle.
So with Dwayne Allen now out for at least a bit of time, it leaves the tight end position very, very thin behind Jack Doyle - and it means that we’ll be seeing even more of Doyle in the meantime.