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Colts Get Greg Toler Back At Practice, All 53 Guys Practice

Intro: The Colts had a pretty healthy injury report coming out of Thursday’s practice. Along with today’s injury report, here are some takeaways from coordinators Pep Hamilton and Greg Manusky meeting with the media.





INDIANAPOLIS – The Colts (11-5) were back indoors for another day of practice on Thursday in preparation for their Divisional Round matchup with the Denver Broncos (12-4).

From an injury report standpoint, the Colts and Broncos both appear to be relatively healthy for this time of year.

Here are some headlines from coordinators Pep Hamilton and Greg Manusky talking to the media on Thursday, along with cornerback Greg Toler:

Pep Hamilton on the play of Boom Herron from Sunday:

"We want guys that can create their own yards to touch the ball."

Bowen's Analysis:* *Herron's 141 total yards of offense against the Bengals are the most a Colts running back has produced in three years. Andrew Luck used Herron as a frequent option in the passing game with the running back catching 10 passes out of the backfield.

In looking at Denver's defense, Hamilton was very complimentary of the unit's talent at all three levels. Hamilton called cornerback Aqib Talib the corner with the best ball skills the Colts have seen so far in 2014. With a Denver secondary of three Pro Bowlers, Herron could once again be an important weapon in the passing game.

Greg Manusky on dealing with the balance of Denver's offense:

"It's hard. No. 1 you have to load the box sometimes to stop the run and then all of a sudden you have a quarterback who, when it's single-high (safety), knows where to go with the ball."

Bowen's Analysis: In the Colts two pervious matchups against Peyton Manning, Manusky brings out the line of "an offensive coordinator out there playing quarterback that can still throw the ball" to describe No. 18.

Manusky knows that Denver, like many teams over the second half of the season, has tried to (and done it) establish more of a running game. That's where the delicate balance of how much the Colts try and blitz impacts Sunday. Can they get a solid pass rush from their front while also containing the run game? That leads to the health of Greg Toler…

Greg Toler on disrupting Peyton Manning's timing:

"It goes hand-in-hand. Us giving guys up front the time to get (Peyton Manning) off his mark, and then disrupting the timing of him and receivers plays a big factor."

Bowen's Analysis: Toler, the lone starter who missed practice on Wednesday, was back participating limited on Thursday. Games on Sunday are why the Colts signed Toler during the 2013 free agency period and why the team traded a second-round pick in 2012 for Vontae Davis.

The disrupting of Manning's timing would seem to fall on the shoulders of the pass rush but the corners will play a substantial role in that as well. Forcing Manning to have to think twice before pulling the trigger on his initial reads keeps that clock ticking for the pass rush to eventually get home. Despite Manning not being the most mobile quarterback, two sacks are the most a team has recorded against him this season. That means coverage on the outside from the Colts cornerbacks (Darius Butler in the slot, too) has to be able to knock off the timing between Manning and his pass catching options.


Here's the injury report from Thursday's practice:

-LIMITED- Greg Toler (limited)

            -After missing Wednesday's practice, Toler was back on Thursday.

-FULL- Jerrell Freeman (abdomen), Jonotthan Harrison (concussion), Andrew Jackson (hamstring), D'Qwell Jackson (rest), Henoc Muamba (back), A.Q. Shipley (ankle) and Erik Walden (knee).

             -I can't remember the last time the Colts had this promising of an injury report with no DNPs and just one guy limited.

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