The Houston Texans and Indianapolis Colts were both considered playoff contenders heading into the season. One team is still on the track while the other one has been one of the NFL’s biggest disappointments. The one thing these team’s have in common are the abnormal amount of injuries each team has incurred through their first seven games. Let’s take a look at all the injuries from both preseason “contenders” in the AFC South.
The Colts main injuries have mostly come from the offensive side of the ball. RB Ahmad Bradshaw was one of the key FA signings by the Colts in the offseason. Bradshaw had 186 rushing yards in three games for 4.5 yards per carry. Bradshaw went down with a neck injury and was eventually placed on injured reserve. TE Dwayne Allen had 1 20-yard reception for a TD before going down with a hip injury. Allen needed surgery for the injury and the recovery was expected to be around four months. Allen was placed on IR in mid-Spetember. WR Reggie Wayne just went down with a torn ACL and meniscus in the Sunday night game against the Broncos. Wayne was Luck’s favorite target this season going catching 38 balls for 503 receiving yards and two TD’s.
If you think those injuries were bad enough, the Colts still have several more key injuries to the team. Rookie 1st rounder Bjoern Warner is out at least 4 weeks with a torn plantar fascia. RB Vick Ballard also went down with a season-ending injury to his knee. Guard Donald Thomas, DL Lawrence Sidbury, LB Shawn Loiseau, and LB Justin Hickman are also out for the season.
The Texans have also seen their fair share of injuries through the first seven weeks of the season. Just this past week the Texans lost ILB Brian Cushing to a torn LCL and leg injury. Cushing will undergo surgery in the next day or two and is out for the remainder of the season. Safety Daniel Manning is also out for the season with a significant knee injury. Both Cushing and Manning were leaders on the Texans defense and are big losses for an already underperforming defense. Owen Daniels also went down with a leg injury that is expected to sideline him at least until week 14. The way the Texans season is going, it’s possible the Texans decide to keep Daniels out for the remainder of the season. LT Duane Brown also missed a few weeks this season with a toe injury causing him to miss big games against the Ravens and Seahawks.
The Texans also have several more injuries that have occurred throughout the season and preseason. RB Arian Foster is nicked up with a hamstring injury and fellow RB Ben Tate has four broken ribs. Both RB’s have the bye week to recover but their status for week 9 is uncertain. QB Matt Schaub was cheered off the field with an ankle injury causing him to miss last week’s game against the Chiefs. The Texans also lost rookies Trevardo Williams, Brennan Williams, David Quessenberry, Alec Lemon, and Alan Bonner to season ending injuries.
Both teams have suffered major injuries but one team is in a much better position than the other. The Colts have a 5-2 record and have already beaten the likes of the 49′ers, Seahawks, and Broncos. The Colts remaining schedule is relatively easy with the Chiefs and Bengals being their toughest opponents. The Texans are 2-5 and have a much tougher road to the playoffs. The Texans still need to face the Patriots, Broncos, and the Colts twice in their long road to a hopeful playoff spot.
The injuries will definitely hinder the two teams but the Colts have set themselves up to take the division even with several major injuries.