AFC Notes: Colts, Harvin, Jets, Browns

The 3-5 Colts, losers of three straight games and one of the NFL’s most disappointing teams, are a strong bet to drop their fourth consecutive contest this Sunday when they match up with the 7-0 Broncos. Their season has also gone poorly away from the field, as speculation regarding the statuses of beleaguered general manager Ryan Grigson and head coach Chuck Pagano has abounded and offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton lost his job earlier this week.

Indy’s players – specifically team leaders Robert Mathis and D’Qwell Jackson – are cognizant of the organization’s off-field turmoil and called a meeting among themselves last week in an effort to galvanize each other. At the meeting, the players encouraged one another to ignore distractions coming from the front office and coaching staff, Stephen Holder of the Indianapolis Star reports. One issue players are unhappy with centers on the front office – not the coaching staff – making certain lineup decisions, a dysfunctional action that takes a significant amount of power from Pagano & Co.

Here’s more from the AFC:

  • Bills receiver Percy Harvin could end up on injured reserve with a knee injury, general manager Doug Whaley told The Buffalo News’ Vic Carucci (Twitter link). Harvin’s knee “flared up,” Whaley said (via Twitter). The seventh-year man has 19 catches on 30 targets this year. He has been out of the Bills’ lineup with injuries since mid-October.
  • Jets cornerback Dee Milliner is back to full health after undergoing wrist surgery during the summer, but the team is unlikely to activate him from short-term injured reserve for this weekend’s game against the Jaguars, per ESPN’s Rich Cimini (Twitter link). On why Milliner won’t be in the lineup, head coach Todd Bowles said (via Howie Kussoy of the New York Post), “It’s just a numbers thing.” If the Jets don’t activate Milliner by Tuesday, they’ll have to place him on season-ending IR.
  • Browns head coach Mike Pettine said cornerback Charles Gaines, who had been on short-term IR because of a hamstring injury, is likely to start playing soon (Twitter link via Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal). Gaines, a sixth-round rookie out of Louisville, hasn’t appeared in an NFL game yet.
  • The Jets worked out two free agent receivers – LaRon Byrd and Damarr Aultman – on Friday, according to Cimini (Twitter link). Byrd is the only of the two who has seen action in the league, though it was for just four games back in 2012. He has one career catch.
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