INDIANAPOLIS (AP) The Colts may be getting healthy just in time for the playoffs.
On Monday, coach Chuck Pagano said he anticipated having most of his injured players back this week and available for Sunday's playoff game against the Bengals.
''Yeah, and I think you'd love to be 100 percent from a health standpoint,'' Pagano said. ''We're not 100 percent. You're never going to be at this time of year. We're hopeful to get the guys that I talked about earlier, get them back and get them back on the field.''
The two-time AFC South champions have been riddled with injuries over the second half of the season, particularly along the offensive line where the Colts have used 10 different starting combinations this season.
Although the Colts (11-5) did not earn a first-round bye, they did have two weeks to rest injured players and tune up for the postseason.
Pagano is optimistic that tight end Dwayne Allen (knee), safety Sergio Brown (bruised hand), right tackle Gosder Cherilus (groin), inside linebacker Jerrell Freeman (hamstring), guard Joe Reitz (ankle) and receiver Reggie Wayne (groin, triceps) will all be on the practice field later this week after the team takes Tuesday off.
Two players, backup offensive lineman A.Q. Shipley (left ankle) and outside linebacker Bjoern Werner (shoulder), are considered day to day.
Pagano also said the team is awaiting test results on right guard Hugh Thornton, who was carted off the field after injuring his right shoulder in the regular season finale Sunday.
But the possible return of Cherilus and Reitz could help solidify the makeshift line. Last weekend, rookie Jack Mewhort moved from left guard to right tackle for the first time. Shipley, who opened the season as the starting center, played left guard. And with Thornton hurt and Reitz out, backup Lance Louis took most of the snaps at right guard.
''Optimistic, hopeful, all of that,'' Pagano said when asked about having some semblance of his original starting line intact Sunday. ''That'd be nice.''
The Colts are still trying to beat the clock on ticket sales, too. Chief operating officer Pete Ward said there were about 7,000 tickets remaining about 30 minutes before the Colts' offices closed Monday.
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