INDIANAPOLIS — Adam Vinatieri’s kicks looked — and sounded — solid at Thursday’s practice.
But does that mean he’s good to go for Sunday’s game against the Oakland Raiders?
Vinatieri, who sits just five points shy of the league’s all-time scoring record, was testing out his injured right groin at the early portion of Thursday’s practice that was available to be viewed by the media.
The 23-year NFL veteran was converting attempt after attempt from various distances during a team field goal drill; he told reporters earlier in the day that he thought he’d have a pretty good idea about his immediate status after getting some work done on the field.
“It’ll be easy to say ‘No’ if it’s not right,” Vinatieri said. “If I feel pretty good, we will keep going forward.”
The right groin injury first popped up for Vinatieri in the week leading up to the Colts’ Week 5 matchup against the New England Patriots. He wasn’t on the injury report the next two weeks, but he said he re-aggravated the groin injury during an extra-point attempt in the second quarter of last Sunday’s game against the Bills, which was one of two extra-point tries Vinatieri would miss that afternoon.
Vinatieri, who also converted a 36-yard field goal and two other extra-point attempts against the Bills, said he’s been doing everything he can to make himself available for Sunday.
“I’m doing alright,” he said. “You know, we’ve been in the training room a ton, just doing everything we can to get back on the field as quickly as possible. And we’ll test it today, and see how it is.”
Head coach Frank Reich said the team was planning on bringing in some free agent kickers for workouts this week, and will have a backup plan if Vinatieri can’t go against the Raiders.
Fortunately for the Colts, the team has its bye week following Sunday’s game, which could go a long way in giving Vinatieri some extra rest to come back even stronger.
Reich next talks to reporters on Friday, when the team will release its out-doubtful-questionable list for the Raiders contest.
“I am going in just thinking for the worst. The crowd is going to be talking trash. I am looking forward to it. I love when someone is talking trash to you because it makes you fight a little harder. So I am looking forward to it.” — Colts linebacker Darius Leonard, on what he’s heard about going to play in Oakland.
Here’s Thursday’s full practice report:
» DNP: S Clayton Geathers (neck); WR Ryan Grant (ankle); S Malik Hooker (hip); RB Marlon Mack (ankle); DE Jabaal Sheard (abdomen); TE Erik Swoope (knee); RB Robert Turbin (shoulder); DT Jihad Ward (ankle)
» Limited: TE Jack Doyle (hip); K Adam Vinatieri (right groin)
» Full: DT/DE Denico Autry (ankle); WR Dontrelle Inman (neck); CB Arthur Maulet (hip)
— This is the first appearance on the injury report for Sheard, who missed practice Thursday with an abdominal issue. Mack, meanwhile, was limited on Wednesday, but did not practice on Thursday, and Geathers was a full participant on Wednesday and is listed as a DNP today. We'll keep an eye on these guys, specifically.
— Good news for Autry and Inman, both of whom were limited on Wednesday but were full-go on Thursday.