Injuries, absences mount before Colts, Texans battle

Andrew Luck #12 of the Indianapolis Colts is stopped by Benardrick McKinney #55 of the Houston Texans and John Simon #51 in the fourth quarter at NRG Stadium on October 16, 2016 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)

HOUSTON, Texas – For years, the AFC South was the Colts’ division. They owned it, winning nine titles in 12 seasons.

Can’t say so anymore though, as the Texans are top dogs, winning back-to-back division titles, four of the last six overall, and three-straight head-to-head games against the Colts.

Sunday’s showdown at NRG Stadium is the first of two matchups between the teams this season, and arguably the best player for each team on either side of the ball will not be suiting up.

  • ANDREW LUCK – The Colts’ placed their All-Pro quarterback on injured reserve this week, ending his season. Luck underwent offseason shoulder surgery and even practiced in recent weeks, but the Colts shut him down after soreness crept into that shoulder in his limited time on the field.
  • DESHAUN WATSON – The Texans certainly appear to have their quarterback of the future, as Watson just became the first rookie QB to win the AFC Offensive Player of the Month award. But Watson’s just not the quarterback of the present after tearing his ACL in practice this week.
  • VONTAE DAVIS – The Colts announced Saturday their starting cornerback didn’t make the trip to Houston and will miss Sunday’s game. Though a groin injury hobbled Davis earlier this season, the team claims this absence is not injury related.
  • JJ WATT – The Texans have been without their All-Pro defensive end since the beginning of October, when he went down with a tibial plateau fracture in a loss to the Chiefs.

For the Colts in particular, the injury report gets worse. Their most productive linebacker, John Simon, will also miss Sunday’s game with a neck injury while left tackle Anthony Castonzo is questionable with a knee injury.

“Our guys have done a tremendous job, the coaches, the players, the building, on focusing what you need to focus on, control what you can control, and you work,” said Colts’ head coach Chuck Pagano about the injuries, specifically the loss of Andrew Luck.

Sunday’s game is scheduled to kick off at 1:00 p.m. It will be broadcast on CBS4.

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