Freeney Optimistic For Quick Return
INDIANAPOLIS – A hallmark of Dwight Freeney is speed. On Wednesday, the four-time Pro Bowler addressed local media about a hopeful quick return from the injury he incurred during the Arizona game.
Freeney, who recorded two sacks against the Cardinals last Sunday night, injured his quadriceps in the third quarter. He said the rehabilitation process is going well and hopes to be back on the field as quickly as possible. He is taking a positive mental approach to his recovery.
"I'm going to think tomorrow will be the day I'm ready, and if it's not tomorrow, it'll be the next day," he said. "I'm just going to take that attitude."
A self-described fast healer, Freeney said he is listening to the team's doctors and hopes to be back sooner than later.
"I'm just going to continue rehabbing and see how it feels every day when I wake up," he said.
If Freeney is unable to play against Seattle on Sunday, Head Coach Jim Caldwell said the Colts would start eighth-year veteran Raheem Brock at right end. The Colts coach said Brock's presence brings some comfort if Freeney is absent.
"The nice thing about it is, he's played so much for us around here that we anticipate he'll come in and play as he always has," Caldwell said. "He's a rough, tough individual that is certainly active and is now going to get a little more playing time, which is good."
Caldwell said defensive end Keyunta Dawson also will be in the defensive end rotation and defensive tackle Eric Foster and linebacker Philip Wheeler might also see time if Freeney misses Sunday.
On Wednesday, Caldwell also updated the status of safety Bob Sanders.
"We are increasing his activity, but he has not gotten out on the practice field yet," the Colts coach said.
BIG PLAYS ON BOTH ENDS
Big plays typically yield large results, and the Colts are no exception.
One reason the team is undefeated through three weeks is their habit of coming up with big plays during crucial stretches on both sides of the ball.
On offense, the Colts are the only team in the NFL to have three players with receptions of 50 yards, with all three plays affecting the outcome of games:
• On the first play from scrimmage in Week 2, tight end Dallas Clark turned a pass over the middle into an 80-yard touchdown that helped the Colts get off to a quick start in a 27-23 victory at Miami.
• Wide receiver Pierre Garcon's 53-yard catch against Arizona put the Colts up three scores before halftime and capped off a 21-point quarter.
• And rookie running back Donald Brown's 72-yard scamper downfield in the third quarter last week set up Joseph Addai's three-yard touchdown, which sealed Indianapolis' victory.
On defense, the Colts did the same, stuffing the stat sheet against the Cardinals and coming up with big plays when they needed them.
In all, the Colts forced three fumbles, intercepted two passes, caused four sacks and stopped the Cardinals on a critical goal-line stand just before halftime.
"In our eyes, those are big plays," safety Melvin Bullitt said. "Those are make-a-difference plays."
The Colts' defense came up particularly big at the end of both halves. In the second quarter, Arizona's four offensive drives resulted in a fumble, two punts and an interception. In the fourth quarter, the Cardinals' four drives ended with a punt, another interception, a turnover on downs and the end of the game.
"We are playing really well," safety Antoine Bethea said. "Some guys are injured, but others are stepping in and making plays. If we can build on what we did in the first three games, I think we can do a lot of good things."
On Wednesday, Caldwell announced the Colts had signed TE-Tom Santi to the practice squad and released TE-Colin Cloherty. Santi was a 2008 sixth-round choice of the Colts and was waived last week.
The Colts on Wednesday released the first injury report of the week, with the following listed as did not participate in practice: LB-Gary Brackett (knee), DEs-Keyunta Dawson (foot) and Dwight Freeney (quadriceps), DBs-Kelvin Hayden (hamstring) and Bob Sanders (knee), WR-Anthony Gonzalez (knee) and RB-Chad Simpson (abdomen).