Colts receiver Austin Collie has been cleared to practice and is anticipated to play in Sunday’s season opener at Chicago.
The statement came a little more than 2 weeks after Collie was assessed with his 3rd full-blown concussion in less than 22 months.
Coach Chuck Pagano said the team put Collie thru a battery of tests before allowing him back on the field Monday.
Teammates and coaches insist Collie’s healthy.
“You speak to Austin, he acts like nothing ever happened,” related cornerback Jerraud Powers, a good friend of Collie’s. “I’m sure he’ll do what’s best for his folks and himself, and when you see him out there, it gives us a lot of excitement.”
Having Collie back is a big boost for a revamped Colts team looking to re-bounce from an awful 2-14 mark last season.
In 3 years, the Brigham Young alum has caught 172 passes for 1,839 yards and 16 touchdowns, and his experience should really provide new QB Andrew Luck with another capable outlet against the Chicago Bears’ vaunted defense.
Few people question Collie’s talent. The concern is his history of head injuries.
Collie sustained 2 diagnosed concussions in the second half the 2010 season, the 1st at Philadelphia when he was knocked out cold and wound up leaving the field on a stretcher. He left a 3rd game that year with what the team described as “concussion-like symptoms.” Colts officers never said it was diagnosed as a concussion. Football spreads
He made it through last season without any known relapses, but left early in the Colts’ 2nd preseason game after taking another shot to the head, this time from Pittsburgh linebacker Larry Foote. Some of Collie’s colleagues thought Foote should have been penalized, though no flag was thrown and league officers didn’t fine Foote.
Collie hadn’t even practiced again till Monday, when Pagano told reporters that Collie was “full go.”
When asked how Collie performed, Pagano declared: “Great, fresh legs, ran all around the place, looked good.”
While Collie made a short appearance in the locker room, he slipped out before taking inquiries from reporters.
Those who were on the field echoed both Pagano’s scouting report and Powers’ personal sentiment.
“Yeah, he looked like the same, old Austin. He was catching passes, running good routes,” safety Antoine Bethea claimed. “If he didn’t think he was ready, I do not believe he’d be out there.”
Pagano said 3 other starters – left guard Mike McGlynn (twisted left ankle), Powers (sprained knee) and defensive end Cory Redding (strained right knee) – are all expected to play against the Chicago Bears, too.
McGlynn has not played since being hurt early in last month’s preseason opener. Redding missed the 1st game, then hurt his knee in Week Two at Pittsburgh and missed the last 2 preseason games. Powers also was hurt in Week Three and was held out of the preseason finale as a precaution.