A much anticipated game debut for a new aquisition will have to wait just a bit.
Linebacker Ernie Sims had to have an appendectomy on Sunday and will be out for the near future, the Colts announced on Monday.
"He’ll be out a couple weeks," said head coach Jim Caldwell of Sims when asked why the linebacker wasn't on the field this morning.
Sims had shown some promise during the team's scrimmage on Saturday with a couple of solid hits and figure to contend for the starting spot vacated by Clint Session.
Last season with Philadelphia, Sims recorded 55 tackles, two sacks and a forced fumble.
The Reitz To Play
With the Colts offensive line still much in flux, a local has managed to put himself into the mix.
Hamilton county native Joe Reitz-who played his high school football at Hamilton Southeastern-has seen time as the tackle on the Colts' first team offense off and on the past few practices.
"I think he’s done a really good job in terms of learning the material," said Caldwell of Reitz. "Obviously, he’s been with us now a little while and he’s not one of the brand new faces, but he still is getting a lot more reps than he’s gotten previously.
"I think he’s doing quite well at this time."
Reitz-who played both football and basketball at Western Michigan-was with the Colts for the majority of last season on the practice squad before being activiated for the Wild Card playoff game against the Jets.
Knowing the playbook figures to give Reitz the edge, since a number of offensive lineman are joining the club for the first time. That does include first round draft pick Anthony Costanzo, who is figures to contend for the left tackle spot as well.
The "Old Head" Of The Class
The departure of Kelvin Hayden and Bob Sanders have suddenly turned the Colts defensive backfield into a unit searching for a leader.
Jacob Lacey, however, believes that the unit has someone to which they can emulate now: Safety Antoine Bethea.
"Smart wise, yeah, that's what I would call him," said Lacey-who refers to Bethea as the "Old Head due ot his experience.
Indeed the safety is the eldest member of the secondary, having been with the Colts since 2006 and earning two Pro Bowl selections. Bethea has also managed to stay injury free in an often nicked up unit, having started all regular season and playoff games the last three seasons.
But beyond his field performance, Lacey says that Bethea has shown the ability to take charge with those in the secondary as training camp has gone on.
"He had a group last night going over things," said Lacey of Bethea."He's a teacher as well. I'll definitely call him 'Old Head'."
Just A Series-Or Maybe More
The NFL Lockout has created a number of quirky things about the way teams go through training camp, and another big one may come on Saturday.
Since teams had less time in the off season to work as a group, first team units may see more playing time than in the past when the Colts travel to St. Louis to face the Rams.
“The only thing that you’re probably going to see, we’re probably going to be fairly close, but maybe there are some guys who will get a few more reps," said Caldwell of the possible changes for the first preseason game. "There may be a few veterans who get a few more reps in the first game than they normally would just because of the fact that maybe it’s positional or maybe that we just feel (someone) needs a little bit more work.
"It could change slightly but not much.”
Typically the some of the top stars on the first team would play just a series or two in the opening preseason game before exciting and yielding to the backups. Defensive end Robert Mathis admitted he didn't know what Saturday might hold as far as more playing time.
"Whatever gets the job done," said Mathis when asked if he believes he'll play more Saturday than in past preseason openers. "Got to get a couple of swings, get your timing down and just make you a better player for the season."