INDIANAPOLIS — Indianapolis Colts quarterback Jacoby Brissett on Thursday was a limited participant in practice for a second straight day as he continues working his way back from a sprained MCL.
Brissett’s status for Sunday’s Week 10 game against the Miami Dolphins at Lucas Oil Stadium is still unknown; head coach Frank Reich will announce who’s been ruled out Friday afternoon, while those who are ruled questionable or doubtful are typically released with the team’s daily practice report later in the day.
Brissett suffered his injury early in the second quarter of last Sunday’s Week 9 road loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers and did not return. An MRI on Monday confirmed he had suffered a sprained MCL in his left knee, but did not indicate any major damage.
With Brissett sidelined against the Steelers, backup Brian Hoyer, signed just before the regular season, came in for his first action with the Colts (5-3) and completed 17-of-26 passes (65.4 percent) for 168 yards with three touchdowns to one interception.
Reich indicated Wednesday Hoyer would be getting added practice reps this week just in case he needs to start Sunday against the Dolphins (1-7). If that does end up being the case, practice squad quarterback Chad Kelly could be signed to the active roster as Hoyer’s backup, Reich said.
Brissett this season has completed 153-of-236 passes (64.8 percent) for 1,649 yards with 14 touchdowns to three interceptions for a quarterback rating of 99.7. He’s also added 37 rushing attempts for 110 yards and one score on the ground.
Wednesday marked one month since Pierre Desir suffered a hamstring injury in the Colts’ Week 5 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs — an injury that has been nagging the team’s top cornerback ever since.
Desir on Wednesday was able to be a limited participant in practice, but on Thursday, he was back to non-participant status.
Reich does not typically talk to reporters on Thursdays, so more should be known about Desir’s status for Sunday’s game against the Dolphins on Friday afternoon.
Desir has been in and out of practice suffering his injury, and although he was able to play Week 7 against the Houston Texans — finishing with seven tackles and two passes defensed, as well as his first interception of the season — Desir has sat out the last two games.
He was initially ruled doubtful last Friday heading into the Week 9 game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, was upgraded to questionable on Saturday but was ultimately inactive on gameday.
“Obviously if we felt he was completely ready, he would’ve played last week,” Reich said Wednesday. “So hopefully he’ll get in there this week, and I would be optimistic for it, but I don’t want to be overly-optimistic. I want to let it play out and make sure he feels great after two full days of practice, which he hasn’t had in a while.”
With Desir out, the Colts have mostly turned to a cornerback rotation that includes Kenny Moore II, Rock Ya-Sin and Marvell Tell III.
Adam Vinatieri is continuing to stay the course.
On Thursday, four days after his potential game-winning attempt from 43 yards out against the Steelers sailed wide left, Vinatieri told reporters that’s all he can do.
“Just go out and practice and work on your craft, you know?” Vinatieri said. “Not think about too much of the other stuff. We’ve got a lot of football left, and just try to go and watch film and see what we can improve on, go back out there and do it.”
Just one week ago, Vinatieri was fielding questions about nailing a game-winning 51-yard field goal against the Denver Broncos. That’s just the up-and-down nature of the NFL, and Vinatieri knows that better than any other player across the league.
“I think all of us go one game at a time,” Vinatieri said. “You can’t look too far in the future or too far behind you; you go through the game film this last week (and) like coach would say, you put it to bed — you watch the film, you correct stuff and you go back to work. So for me last week, last month, last whatever — year — is behind me, and just moving forward.”
Vinatieri this season has connected on 12-of-17 (70.6 percent) of his field goal attempts, and 14-of-19 (73.7 percent) of his extra-point tries.
He said it’s been “an interesting year to say the least,” but he remains confident in his abilities, as well as those on the field goal and extra point units with him, including long snapper Luke Rhodes and punter/holder Rigoberto Sanchez, who Vinatieri says “are as good as any guys I’ve ever played with.”
Rhodes and Sanchez have each taken blame for their respective roles in the missed kick last Sunday against the Steelers — the ball was kicked with the laces facing the kicker — but Vinatieri says it’s ultimately on him to put the ball between the uprights, no matter what.
“Listen: my two counterparts are awesome, all the guys that are up front do a great job. We’ve all kind of beat ourselves up a little bit over this because it wasn’t a perfect operation all the way around, but that’s just one of those things,” he said. “They do a great job, and I’ve got all the confidence in the world in them. So I’ll take that on me; I need to make them.”
Here’s the full injury report from Thursday’s practice:
» DNP: WR Parris Campbell (hand); CB Pierre Desir (hamstring); WR T.Y. Hilton (calf); CB Quincy Wilson (shoulder)
» Limited: QB Jacoby Brissett (knee); C Ryan Kelly (burner)
» Full: S Clayton Geathers (not injury related; rest); S Malik Hooker (knee)