(Indianapolis, IN) - The Indianapolis Colts and New York Jets will have plenty of holes to fill when the teams meetup in East Rutherford Sunday. .
The Colts defense seemed to catch a break yesterday when linebacker Dwight Freeney fully participated in the team's Thursday practice. Interim head coach Bruce Arians said Freeney's reps were limited this week to ensure the 7-time pro-bowlers participation Sunday.
Freeney's involvement is crucial following a knee injury to Robert Mathis that will sideline the sack master for two-to-three weeks. Pat Angerer hasn't practiced all week and could miss another game at starting inside linebacker with a broken foot.
Other defensive players that missed practice yesterday include defensive end Fili Moala, corner Vontae Davis, and nose tackle Martin Tevaseu.
A combination of players have saved the offensive line because of injuries, and Andrew Luck's offense will face the added difficulty of operating without the services of Donald Brown at starting running back.
Brown will miss two-to-three weeks after tearing cartilage in his knee during a 2-point conversion attempt against the Packers. Rookie Vick Ballard will start against the 2-3 Jets, and will likely be spelled by Delone Carter and Mwelde Moore who are back from injury.
Center Samson Satele should return at starting center after going full speed at practice Thursday. Seth Olsen was filling in for Joe Reitz at guard until his season ended following the Packers game. Reitz has missed the entire season with a knee injury and has not practiced for the 2-2 Colts.
For the Jets, Antonio Cromartie has excelled as the number one corner following the loss of Darrelle Revis.
Cromartie is charged with guarding the Colts best player this season, Reggie Wayne, and has accounted for 24 interceptions since entering the league in 2006.
Revis tore his ACL against the Miami Dolphins and is considered the best shutdown corner in the game. A few other starters on the Jets defense could be resting injuries this week, including tackle Sione Po'uha and linebacker Bryan Thomas.
Po'uha was held out of practice Thursday and Thomas's reps were limited. Starting linebacker Bart Scott and safety LaRon Landry were upgraded after fully participating in practice Thursday.
Center Nick Mangold and fullback John Conner didn't practice for the Jets and tight end Justin Keller's reps were limited.
Coach Rex Ryan named Mark Sanchez the starting quarterback against the Colts, ending a week of speculation that Sanchez could be replaced by Tim Tebow.
The former standout at USC has six interceptions to match his six touchdowns and is completing less than fifty percent of his passes in 2012.
Tebow has done virtually nothing during his limited time on the field this season with the Jets.
The Colts and Jets kickoff at the Meadowlands Sunday at 1:00
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