Clayton Geathers

Injury Updates: Patriots, Colts, Lions, Redskins

The final injury reports for Week 7 came out earlier today, and there was a lot of news. Lots of key players will be missing their team’s games, while others will be returning after extended absence. One notable rule-out was the Patriots declaring that starting right tackle Marcus Cannon would miss their game against the Bears. It’s a big loss for New England, especially in a week where they have to go up against Khalil Mack. Mack will now be lining up across from a backup tackle, and could end up making life miserable for Tom Brady.

Here are more injury updates from around the league:

  • The Colts have been the most injured team in recent memory the past few weeks, but are finally getting some good news. Star receiver T.Y. Hilton has missed the past two games with a hamstring injury, but is ready to make his return this week. Unfortunately for Indianapolis, they’ll still be without tight end Jack Doyle and receiver Ryan Grant as well as several key contributors on defense like safety Clayton Geathers and defensive tackle Denico Autry.
  • The Lions will be without running back Theo Riddick, who went down during the team’s win over the Packers. Riddick has been operating as the Lions’ third down back, and rookie Kerryon Johnson should get more run with him out of the way. On the bright side, the team looks like it could be getting back pass-rusher Ezekiel Ansah, who hasn’t played since Detroit’s Week 1 loss. Ansah is listed as questionable but practiced all three days this week.
  • The Redskins will be thin on pass-catchers, as Jamison Crowder has been ruled out for the team’s game against the Cowboys while Paul Richardson is listed as doubtful. Washington promoted Jehu Chesson from the practice squad yesterday, signaling they weren’t expecting Richardson to play. Tight end Jordan Reed should see a ton of looks as the Redskins’ receiving corp is completely depleted.

For a rundown of every team’s injury situation, you can view all 32 injury reports over at ProFootballTalk.com.

Colts Rumors: Brissett, Castonzo, Hooker

Colts owner Jim Irsay said earlier this week that he wouldn’t consider trading backup quarterback Jacoby Brissett in exchange for a first-round pick, and it sounds like new head coach Frank Reich agrees, as Mike Wells of ESPN.com writes. “We actually talked right at the beginning of camp, and I just cannot emphasize enough how fortunate we are to have Jacoby,” Reich said. “I think this guy’s one of the top 20 quarterbacks in the NFL, and we have two of them on this team. It will be a different role for him. We talked about that, and Jacoby is a real pro in every sense of the word.” Brissett, who started 15 games for Indianapolis a season ago, will now act as the club’s No. 2 option behind Andrew Luck, who is recovering from a shoulder injury which cost him the entire 2017 campaign.

Here’s more on the Colts:

  • Left tackle Anthony Castonzo re-injured his hamstring last week and will now be “miss a little bit of time,” Reich told Stephen Holder of the Indianapolis Star. Castonzo, who began camp on the physically unable to perform list while dealing with the same injury, has only missed five total games through seven NFL seasons. At this point, it’s unclear if Castonzo is in danger of missing regular season action, but the Colts don’t have much tackle depth behind him. While Indianapolis spent the offseason reinforcing the interior of its offensive line, tackle wasn’t necessarily addressed in the same fashion. Currently, journeyman J’Marcus Webb, who was signed at the end of July, is filling in on the blindside.
  • Speaking of Colts injuries, safeties Malik Hooker and Clayton Geathers could both be ready for Week 1 after dealing with their own health questions marks, per Zak Keefer of the Indianapolis Star. Both Hooker, who is recovering from a torn ACL, and Geathers, working his way back from January knee surgery, opened training camp on the PUP list but have since been moved to the active roster. If Hooker and/or Geathers aren’t available to begin the season, the Colts will turn to Matthias Farley (who started 15 games in 2017) or T.J. Green to carry the load.
  • On the Colts’ first unofficial depth chart of the preseason, 2017 second-round pick Quincy Wilson was not listed as a starter at cornerback. Instead, journeyman Pierre Desir and former undrafted free agent Kenny Moore are the current top options in the Indianapolis secondary. In a separate piece, Holder looks at the unlikely ascendance of Moore, whom the Colts picked up via waivers last September.

AFC Notes: Colts, Steelers, Perriman

An Anthony Castonzo stay on the PUP list due to a midsummer hamstring tweak was among the Colts‘ late-offseason concerns, but that won’t end up taking place. The Colts did not end up placing their top left tackle on the PUP list, per Mike Chappell of CBS 4 (Twitter link). However, Chappell notes (via Twitter) Indianapolis did follow through with placing safeties Malik Hooker and Clayton Geathers on the PUP. Both were expected to land there, with Hooker (torn ACL, MCL in October) being a bit further away from a return.

Here’s the latest from the AFC on the final offseason Sunday for most teams.

  • August extensions have been one of the Steelers‘ traditions over the years, and an unlikely candidate for a significant pay bump’s emerged. Chris Boswell joined the Steelers midway through the 2015 season, but his production last year (35-for-38 on field goals, four game-winning makes en route to the Pro Bowl) and contract-year status make him a prime preseason-extension candidate, Joe Rutter of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review writes. The Steelers applied a second-round RFA tender (2.9MM) to Boswell this year, and Rutter believes it will take a guarantee in the $9MM-plus range to keep Boswell in Pittsburgh. Only two kickers — Stephen Gostkowski and Justin Tucker — received eight-figure guarantees, with the Bears’ Cody Parkey guarantee sitting in third.
  • Despite a light investment at linebacker to replace Ryan Shazier, don’t automatically look for the Steelers to deploy Terrell Edmunds as a hybrid safety just yet, Mark Kaboly of The Athletic writes (subscription required). Kaboly expects the first-round pick to play in the William Gay role as a dime contributor as a rookie, with UFA linebacker add Jon Bostic or second-year man Tyler Matakevich replacing Shazier.
  • In what is Breshad Perriman‘s last chance to make an impact with the Ravens, he may be on the outside looking in to make the team, Jeff Zreibec of The Athletic notes. In addition to being behind new additions Michael Crabtree, Willie Snead and John Brown, Zreibec notes the 2015 first-round pick is “certainly” trailing Chris Moore and Tim White as well. (Moore is a career backup, and White is a former UDFA who has yet to play in an NFL game.) Considering rookies Jaleel Scott (Round 4) and Jordan Lasley (Round 5) also may be ahead of Perriman, this is a bind for the one-time highly regarded prospect. Ravens officials, however, wonder how much different the Central Florida product’s career would be had he been able to be on the field during the team’s past training camps rather than missing most of those sessions due to injuries, per Zreibec. Perriman looked on the verge of a promising season after shining in the 2017 offseason program, but a hamstring tear put the kibosh on those hopes. Baltimore picked up an option bonus of $649K earlier this week, but that will merely buy the fourth-year pass-catcher this preseason to try and make one final impression.
  • Phillip Lindsay now serves as a wild card in the Broncos‘ running back room. The Colorado product who blazed to a 4.39-second 40-yard dash clocking at his pro day received interest from several other teams before opting to stay in Denver, Mike Klis of 9News notes. The Denver native’s $15K signing bonus marked the third-highest in John Elway‘s eight-year tenure at the helm. Klis writes Vance Joseph plans to evaluate the 5-foot-7 speedster for a Darren Sproles-type role as a third-down back and return man. The Broncos have struggled on returns since parting ways with Trindon Holliday after the 2013 season. Primary 2017 return man Isaiah McKenzie fumbled six times as a rookie. The Broncos added two rookies — third-rounder Royce Freeman and seventh-rounder David Williams — to a backfield mix that includes veterans Devontae Booker and De’Angelo Henderson.

Hooker, Geathers Likely To Land On PUP List

While Andrew Luck is expected at long last to be ready to go at Colts training camp, three of his teammates aren’t likely to join him at the Frank Reich-led practices’ outset.

Colts left tackle Anthony Castonzo, along with safeties Malik Hooker and Clayton Geathers, are likely to begin training camp on the PUP list, Mike Chappell of CBS 4 notes.

Castonzo’s issue is merely a hamstring he tweaked this offseason, per Chappell, who adds he should be back soon. Hooker, Indianapolis’ top safety, was not expected to be ready in time for camp. But Chris Ballard provided an update on his initial draft pick as Colts GM.

The second-year Indianapolis GM said Hooker “should return” in time for the second half of the Colts’ preseason. This represents a more definitive timetable for Hooker, who tore an ACL and MCL Oct. 22, 2017. Previous updates were vague and didn’t have the Ohio State safety looking certain for Week 1.

While that’s still uncertain, Ballard supplied more clarity. Geathers, however, has encountered a new problem than the one that plagued him last offseason.

A neck injury shelved Geathers for 10 games last season, but he won’t be landing on the PUP because of it. He underwent knee surgery earlier this offseason and is working his way back, with Ballard indicating the fourth-year safety is 80 to 85 percent at present. Injuries have limited Geathers significantly during his career. He played in just nine games in 2016 and five last year.

The Colts report to camp Wednesday. Players who begin camp on the PUP list can be taken off and deployed in Week 1. If they land on the Reserve/PUP list at the end of the preseason, they are out for the season’s first six weeks.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Colts Activate Safety Clayton Geathers

The Colts activated safety Clayton Geathers from the Reserve/PUP List the team reported today. It also waived linebacker Joshua PerryClayton Geathers (Vertical)

Geathers, who suffered a season-ending neck injury in Week 15 of 2016 vs. Minnesota, underwent surgery on a bulging disk in March and was placed on the reserve/physically unable to perform list on Sept. 2. The third-year safety returned to practice following the Colts’ 27-0 loss to Jacksonville in Week 7.

A fourth-round selection out of Central Florida in 2015, Geathers appeared in 15 games as a rookie before emerging as the team’s starting free safety in 2016. He tallied 58 tackles, five passes defensed and forced a fumble in nine games before sustaining the injury.

Geathers will be a welcome addition to a defensive secondary that has permitted the second most passing yards in the league.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

South Notes: Koetter, Colts, Jaguars

Preseason playoff projection darlings, the Buccaneers are floundering and reside alone in last place in the NFC South. They are likely going to miss postseason play for the 10th straight year, and second-year coach Dirk Koetter could be on the hot seat. The team’s former OC made an interesting comment about one of the components that could be behind the Bucs’ five-game losing streak.

What happens when a team loses is sometimes (the players) are not confident in the coach, or the scheme, or the other side of the ball or their teammates,’’ Koetter said, via Roy Cummings of Florida Football Insiders. “That’s human nature. That happens in every aspect of life. Do I think there is possibly some of that going on (here)? Yeah, there probably is. The easiest way to fix it is (to) play good team football and get a win.’’

The Bucs will now be playing without Jameis Winston for multiple games and will attempt to snap their skid Sunday without Mike Evans as well.

Here’s the latest from the South divisions in advance of the Week 10 Sunday slate.

  • Andrew Luck is seeking possible non-traditional medical treatments in Europe, but the Colts quarterback’s background in Germany — where he spent much of his childhood — may make him more amenable to these techniques, sports injury expert Will Carroll tweets. The Indianapolis Star’s Stephen Holder also doesn’t view the 28-year-old quarterback’s decision as an alarming development regarding his progress (Twitter link), assessing it as “incremental” in Luck’s rehab process. The goal regarding Luck’s overseas trip is to not only reduce the pain he’s experiencing but to address muscular function as well, per Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter).
  • Clayton Geathers joined Luck in being sidelined for the Colts’ first nine games, but the third-year safety looks set to return after a scary neck injury soon. Stashed on the PUP list, Geathers has looked “tremendous,” per Chuck Pagano (via Holder, on Twitter). Indianapolis hopes to deploy Geathers coming out of its Week 11 bye. He started in nine games last season but has missed over a year of action due to the neck injury he suffered last season. Geathers underwent surgery in March.
  • The Jaguars aren’t ready to activate Dede Westbrook. The rookie wideout won’t play in Jacksonville’s Week 10 game against the Chargers on Sunday, Mike Kaye of First Coast News tweets. The Jags designated Westbrook to return from IR in late October but have just more than a week to decide if he will play for them this season or spend all year on IR.

Colts Down To 53

The Colts made major news on Saturday when they shipped wide receiver Phillip Dorsett to the Patriots in exchange for quarterback Jacoby Brissett. After that, they had the daunting task of bringing their bloated preseason roster down to the 53-man max in time for the deadline. Here’s the complete rundown.

Waived:

Waived/Injured:

Released:

Placed On IR:

PUP List:

Richardson, who once had a prominent role with the Rams, joined the Colts on Aug. 29 and was viewed as a longshot to make the final cut.

Colts To Place Clayton Geathers On Reserve/PUP

The Colts will place safety Clayton Geathers on the reserve/physically unable to perform list, meaning he will miss the first six games of the 2017 season, as general manager Chris Ballard announced Monday.Clayton Geathers (Vertical)

Geathers, 25, suffered a season-ending neck injury in December, and subsequently underwent surgery on a bulging disc in March. Last season, Geathers started nine games before being sidelined, managing 58 tackles and five passes defensed while grading as the league’s No. 26 safety, per Pro Football Focus. He’s under contract through the 2018 campaign.

“A lot of this with Geathers is just the healing process,” Ballard said. “He’s in a good frame mentally. He’s worked hard and he’s done everything from a rehab standpoint. I think once we get into September and October it’ll really start ramping up for him.”

As Roster Resource indicates, second-year safety T.J. Green will likely step into the starting lineup in place of Geathers, lining up opposite rookie first-rounder Malik Hooker. Green started four games last year, seeing action on 44% of Indianapolis’ defensive snaps.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC Notes: Broncos, Steelers, Browns, Colts

Broncos general manager John Elway is entering a contract year, but the franchise icon expects to sign an extension by the start of the season, reports Nicki Jhabvala of the Denver Post (Twitter links). “Yep. I don’t think there will be any doubt,” said Elway, who added that he has no interest in leaving Denver. After thriving as the Broncos’ quarterback from 1983-1998, a stretch in which he won two Super Bowls and made nine Pro Bowls, the Hall of Famer’s success has continued with the organization away from the field. Since Elway took over as the Broncos’ GM five years ago, the club has gone 59-31 with four playoff appearances and another Super Bowl title.

More from the AFC:

  • Speaking with reporters (including Ray Fittipaldo of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette) on Tuesday, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger was unwilling to say whether he plans to continue his career beyond the upcoming season. “I never commit to anyone more than one year,” stated the 35-year-old Roethlisberger, who indicated that he did seriously consider retiring after last season. “Did you think I was lying?” he said.
  • One of Roethlisberger’s teammates, wide receiver Martavis Bryant, realizes his career is hanging in the balance as a result of the two suspensions he has incurred in three years (via Lindsay H. Jones of USA Today). “I know it’s my last chance,” acknowledged Bryant, who’s back after missing all of last season on account of a violation of the league’s substance abuse policy. The 25-year-old doesn’t expect any more off-field slip-ups going forward. Regarding the past year, Bryant stated: “I developed better habits. I changed who I hang around. I’ve become a family man. I just had a son, he’s seven weeks. It’s really me developing my life and getting back on track.”
  • Speaking of troubled receivers, the chances of Josh Gordon ever playing for the Browns again are slim to none, Tony Grossi of ESPN Cleveland opines (on Twitter). The suspended Gordon, whom the NFL denied reinstatement two weeks ago, can reapply in the fall.
  • The Colts still aren’t sure when safety Clayton Geathers will return from the season-ending neck injury he suffered last December, writes Kevin Bowen of the team’s website. Geathers, who underwent surgery on a bulging disc in March, started in all nine of his appearances as a second-year player in 2016. If Geathers is healthy during the upcoming season, he should be in line to start alongside free safety Malik Hooker, the Colts’ first-round pick. Otherwise, that role could go to T.J. Green.

Zach Links contributed to this post.

Colts Move Jack Mewhort, Clayton Geathers To IR

The Colts will finish their season without the services of two starters after placing left guard Jack Mewhort and free safety Clayton Geathers on IR.

A left knee injury will sideline Mewhort, per the Associated Press, with Geathers being unable to overcome a neck malady that sidelined him for the past two games.

To fill the duo’s roster spots, Indianapolis promoted wide receiver Devin Street from the practice squad and signed safety Duke Williams.

Thought to potentially be out for the entire season with a torn ACL sustained during preseason play, Mewhort returned in time for Week 1 and started for the Colts in each of the 10 games for which he was active. Mewhort has rated as a top-25 guard in each of the past two seasons in the opinion of Pro Football Focus, coming in as the No. 22 player at the interior-line spot after finishing 2015 as the site’s ninth-highest-graded guard.

The former second-round pick has started each of the 40 games he’s played and will be entering a contract year in 2017.

A fourth-rounder last year, Geathers rated as a top-10 run-defending safety, per PFF, but played in just nine games in this his second season. Geathers finished with 58 tackles, five pass deflections and a forced fumble during his first season as a full-time starter, a status he will likely return to in 2017 assuming he overcomes this neck setback.

The 6-7 Colts now have eight players on IR, also placing backup linebacker Curt Maggitt on the season-ending list.

The Bills cut Williams earlier this year after the former fourth-round pick in 2013 made 10 starts for Buffalo from 2014-16.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.