This should come as no surprise, but the Indianapolis Colts will be severely limited at cornerback for Saturday’s preseason game against the Philadelphia Eagles. Cornerbacks Jalil Brown, D’Joun Smith, Tevin Mitchel, Vontae Davis, Patrick Robinson, and Antonio Cromartie all won’t play. In other injury news, starting right tackle Joe Reitz is questionable with a back issue, while the other guys expected to miss the game - like Joe Haeg, Henry Anderson, Kendall Langford, and Sio Moore - obviously won’t play.
The main concern is easily the corner position, and head coach Chuck Pagano made it clear that the Colts will get creative at the position. Whether that happens this week or they wait until the regular season remains to be seen, but the Colts are stretched thin at the spot. Pagano mentioned Tay Glover-Wright, Darius Butler, and Chris Milton among the guys who will need to help fill in this Saturday.
The Colts aren’t rushing Patrick Robinson back from a groin injury, while some of the other injuries could perhaps heal up soon - such as Tevin Mitchel, who Pagano is hopeful can play in the preseason finale a week from today. Antonio Cromartie isn’t injured, but the Colts still aren’t going to play him.
“He could [play], but I’m not going to play him,” Pagano said.
“He knows exactly what to do, but I’m not going to throw him out there,” he continued. “He’s not had an offseason. He’s in great shape, he knows the plan, he knows the terminology - picked that up, obviously being in a similar system helped. He could [play], but I’m not going to do it.”
As for Joe Reitz, if he can’t play, rookie Le’Raven Clark is next in line to start at right tackle. Remember, Joe Haeg is week-to-week with an ankle injury, so while he may have been the replacement there it now falls to Clark to protect Andrew Luck if Reitz can’t go. Honestly, there’s no reason to push Reitz back, though at the same time this is the most important preseason game, so if he’s able to play they’d love to get him out there. On a related note, something to consider is that Chuck Pagano said they’d love for the starters to play the entire first half and into the third quarter but that they’ll see how the game goes and that health may dictate that a little. I can’t help but wonder whether, if Clark plays, that might cut Luck’s playing time a bit shorter than it otherwise would have been.
The good news on the injury front is that tight end Dwayne Allen, who missed practice today, just received a rest day and should be good to go on Saturday.