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Report: Colts place Hugh Thornton on injured reserve

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NFL: Indianapolis Colts at Houston Texans Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

One of the big questions for the Indianapolis Colts during final cuts is what their plan is regarding guard Hugh Thornton.

According to Sporting News’ Alex Marvez, the Colts are placing Thornton on injured reserve.

This move shouldn’t really come as a big surprise, as we mentioned the other day that the only realistic way of keeping him around was to place him on IR. He’s dealt with injuries during his tenure with the Colts, and this year missed most of training camp and all of preseason with an ankle injury, still being considered week-to-week. With other injuries - particularly to guards Jack Mewhort and Joe Haeg - the Colts couldn’t afford to keep another injured guy on their active roster, so it was almost guaranteed Thornton wouldn’t be making the 53-man roster today. The only question was whether he’d be placed on IR, and it sounds like that is indeed what will happen. It’s unclear whether the team hopes he can return this year (you don’t have to designate it now), or whether they’ll just leave him there for the rest of the season and let him walk as a free agent, or whether they’ll waive him with an injury settlement.

Thornton has now been on injured reserve for at least part of each of the past three seasons, though he’s played in 37 games (starting 32) during his three seasons with the Colts. He was presumed to be a favorite to win the starting right guard spot this offseason, but he wasn’t able to work during the offseason program due to injury. He returned in time for training camp, but soon he was once again sidelined with an injury - and he hasn’t returned since. Denzelle Good was already starting to emerge as the frontrunner for the spot anyway, and Thornton’s injury just cemented it. It is certainly fair to wonder whether we’ve already seen the last of Hugh Thornton in a Colts uniform, and the fact that he’s now on IR would seem to make it likely.