Return of cornerbacks put Colts secondary near full strength
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) Indianapolis Colts cornerback Patrick Robinson enjoyed getting back to work Thursday.
After leaving the Denver game two weeks ago with a concussion, Robinson went through almost two full weeks in the concussion protocol.
Finally, on Thursday, he was cleared for full participation and he looks as if he'll be starting Sunday in London.
He can't wait.
''It's no fun going through the process like this, especially when you want to be out there on the field,'' Robinson said Thursday. ''But I'm clear now, and I'm ready.''
The Colts (1-2) are eager to get him back, too, after being so thin in the secondary against Denver that they almost ran out of players to use in their usual nickel package.
Now, suddenly, everybody seems to be on the mend.
Pro Bowl safety Mike Adams has been the anchor and will continue to play that role.
Safety Clayton Geathers, the projected starter heading into training camp, returned two weeks ago after missing all of July, August and the first part of September with an injured foot. After making his season debut against the Broncos, Geathers was sore. This week, not so much.
Safety T.J. Green, the rookie who replaced Geathers on the depth chart, returned last week from a sprained knee and has practiced all of this week.
And Indy's other starting cornerback Vontae Davis finally made it back last week after missing more than a month with a sprained ankle. He's also expected to start against Jacksonville (0-3) .
It's about time.
When the injuries hit, first-year defensive coordinator Ted Monachino improvised by shrinking the playbook, using anyone capable of playing and willing to fill in the gaps, held on until key contributors, such as Davis and Robinson, were given the all clear.
Now, the Colts can start to open things up.
''See this smile on my face?'' Adams said. ''It feels good. I'm not taking anything away from the other guys who filled in, but now that we've got guys healthy, it does make a difference with how we game plan.''
Adams, Monachino and coach Chuck Pagano haven't dropped any hints this week about what might change.
But this much is clear: Indy will have far more options available in Week 4 , and they plan to use everything they can against a team that set a franchise record with 51 points in their previous meeting.
''The further we go down the road with them the better they'll get and right now they're in a good spot for where they've been in terms of how far off the injuries they are,'' Monachino said. ''I think that they're all getting better every day, you can see it on the practice field.''
Notes: The Colts will be without backup offensive lineman Jonotthan Harrison on Sunday. Pagano said he had an emergency appendectomy this week and is expected to be out at least a week. ... Starting right tackle Joe Reitz (back) and starting right guard Denzelle Good (back) both did limited work in practice Thursday. It's unclear if or how much they'll play Sunday. ... Receiver T.Y. Hilton (knee) and quarterback Andrew Luck (right shoulder) did all the work at practice Thursday. Hilton got an extra day of rest Wednesday, while Luck was limited.
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