Vinatieri went through an MRI earlier this week, after appearing on Indianapolis’ injury report Wednesday. McLaughlin has kicked for the Chargers and 49ers this season, and his rookie-year work prompted the Patriots and Bills to submit waiver claims in an attempt to land him. The Colts carried the higher waiver priority and will see if the young specialist can solve some of their kicking woes.
This will halt Vinatieri’s run of appearances as a Colt. The future Hall of Famer, brought over from New England in 2006, has not missed a game due to injury since Super Bowl XLIV. The Colts signed Matt Stover to replace an injured Vinatieri after a knee injury ended his 2009 season after six games. He has kicked in every Colts game over the past 10 seasons.
The soon-to-be 47-year-old specialist remains on Indianapolis’ active roster, despite this being his worst season as a pro. Vinatieri has missed eight field goals and six extra points, almost certainly affecting the Colts’ playoff pursuit. Filling in for Michael Badgley and then Robbie Gould, McLaughlin has made 7 of 8 field goals and is 15-for-15 on PATs.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.