Is Freeney’s injury worse than Colts are letting on?

If asked to name as many players on the Colts’ defense as they could, the causal NFL fan may struggle coming up with five names. But the one name that would undoubtedly come out of his or her mouth would be defensive end Dwight Freeney.

In only 14 games this season, Freeney racked up 13.5 sacks, 24 tackles and one forced fumble. At times, he provides all the pass-rush that the Colts need and will play a crucial role in the team’s success come February 7 when Indianapolis takes on the Saints in Super Bowl XLIV.

The problem with that, however, is that Freeney sprained his right ankle in the AFC Championship Game last weekend and although head coach Jim Caldwell told the Indianapolis Star that his Pro Bowl D-end’s ankle was progressing, there’s some question about whether or not Freeney will actually be at 100% health come Super Bowl Sunday.

Freeney missed practice on Thursday and isn’t expected to partake in any of the Pro Bowl activities, so he’ll have at least a week of rest before getting back onto the practice field. And if the ankle hasn’t shown any signs of improvement by Monday, Caldwell would surely limit Freeney’s participation n in practice the week of the Super Bowl.

If he does wind up missing an entire two weeks of practice, will Freeney be as effective during the Super Bowl as he was this season? He’s an eight-year veteran of the Colts’ defense, so it’s not like he needs extra reps at this point in his career. But even after only two weeks of inactively, the game has a tendency to slow down for players.

Given how vital it’ll be for the Colts to pressure Saints quarterback Drew Brees, having Freeney at 100% is crucial.

Photo from fOTOGLIF

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