Colts To Monitor Philip Rivers' Toe, Braden Smith's Thumb

Indianapolis Colts head coach Frank Reich spoke to local reporters via video conference on Monday, the day after the team’s Week 11 victory over the Green Bay Packers. What updates did he have on a toe injury suffered by quarterback Philip Rivers, why right tackle Braden Smith was held out on Sunday and more?

INDIANAPOLIS — Indianapolis Colts head coach Frank Reich spoke to local reporters via video conference on Monday, the day after the team's Week 11 victory over the Green Bay Packers. What updates did he have on a toe injury suffered by quarterback Philip Rivers, why right tackle Braden Smith was held out on Sunday and more?

You can catch that entire session above, but here are some top takeaways:

» The Colts are monitoring a toe injury suffered by quarterback Philip Rivers: Rivers seemed to suffer the injury early in the fourth quarter of Sunday's overtime win over the Packers; he was obviously moving around a little gingerly, and then at one point, after talking with trainers, he entered the blue medical tent on the sideline.

Rivers returned to the ballgame a short time later, however, and even though he continued to show a slight limp, he would remain at quarterback the rest of the way.

Reich said Monday Rivers' toe was "obviously pretty sore so we will just have to see as the week goes on."

Given Rivers' history, however, it would be shocking if this injury kept him from playing in this Sunday's huge divisional showdown against the Tennessee Titans at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Rivers, at 231 regular season games — and 242 games total — has the NFL's longest active consecutive starts streak, which started on Sept. 11, 2006. He's been known to play through a couple pretty serious injuries along the way, as much as he doesn't like to really talk about it.

"Yeah, I'll be alright," Rivers said after the Packers game. "I just got my big toe. I've never had anything with a toe, but it will probably be sore week, but I anticipate being fine."

» Braden Smith is working his way through a "weird" thumb injury: Smith suffered the injury in practice last week and was labeled as questionable heading into the Packers game, although Reich had expressed confidence that his third-year right tackle would likely be good to go.

But Smith would end up being a late addition to the inactives list on Sunday. So what happened?

"In trying to protect the thumb last week, I was thinking there was a 99-percent (chance) he was going to be able to make it through," Reich said Monday. "We could not find a way to protect his thumb that he could get comfortable and that he could play. That was unfortunate."

Le'Raven Clark got his third-career start at right tackle in Smith's place, although the Colts would end up using a rotation of sorts at the position with Chaz Green; in the end, Green ended up playing 62 offensive snaps (74 percent) to Clark's 22 (26 percent).

"Strauss (offensive line coach Chris Strausser) and I talked about it when we saw Braden was going to be down and we just said we'll rotate those guys through," Reich said, "I kind of just let that up to Strauss. I said, 'Hey, Le'Raven (Clark) starts, just kind of go every two or three series. However it was playing out, you judge and feel how it's going and rotate them as you see fit.' I think overall – both guys in a very difficult situation stepped up and did more than adequate. I was more than happy with their ability to step up and perform at a level that would help us win that game."

So what's Smith's status moving forward, starting with this Sunday's Week 12 matchup against the Titans? Reich said he's "hopeful" to get his starting right tackle back.

"Hopefully it gets better," said Reich, who added that Smith had thumb surgery on a Monday last season and ended up playing in the game the following Sunday. "We'll take it day-by-day, we'll experiment with it every day and as soon as he gets to the point where he can function and do what he has to do with his right hand, then he will be back out there."

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