INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The Indianapolis Colts’ offensive line appears to be bracing for the return of one starter, but the absence of another.
Center Ryan Kelly, who has missed the last three games with a knee injury, returned to practice on a limited basis Wednesday. On the downside, right guard Mark Glowinski, who suffered an injury to his right ankle in Sunday’s win at Houston, was not seen during the portion of practice open to the media.
Kelly’s return would be a boost. Even though backup Evan Boehm has played well, the 2016 first-round draft pick was playing at a Pro Bowl level before spraining the medial collateral ligament in his left knee against Tennessee.
“Evan’s done a great job stepping in there,’’ quarterback Andrew Luck said, “but it’s always comforting to have your center back up.’’
Kelly has been working with the team’s rehabilitation staff, and has progressed to the point he’s ready for practice. He’ll wear a brace on his left knee for stability.
“I think we’ve done everything we’ve had to do and checked all the boxes off the last week, and even early this week,’’ Kelly said. “I feel confident. I wouldn’t go out there if I wasn’t feeling able to do everything I need to do.
“There’s obviously going to be a little bit of pain here and there, but you’ve got to push through it. Might be a little sore, but it’s week 14 or whatever and everybody’s going to be a little sore.’’
Change at guard?
While the Colts might be getting the anchor of their line back, they could be turning to a third starting right guard.
Glowinski injured his right ankle late in the second quarter at Houston and was replaced by Josh Andrews. He returned for the first drive of third quarter, but again gave way to Andrews, who finished the game.
Glowinski played 35 of the 67 snaps against the Texans while Andrews was on the field for 32.
If Glowinski is unable to play Sunday against Dallas, the Colts options include sticking with Andrews, who was signed off Philadelphia’s practice squad Nov. 20, or going with Joe Haeg. Andrews appeared in 16 games with the Eagles since 2015, but has never started.
Haeg has been on the Colts’ more versatile linemen. He has played in 36 games with 33 starts spread among left tackle, right tackle, left guard and right guard.
Glowinski has started the last eight games after Matt Slauson sustained a season-ending back injury in week 5 at New England.