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Colts Secondary Shorthanded in Game Versus Cleveland

The Indianapolis Colts have separated themselves from the rest of the AFC South with two straight wins. Indy is 8-4 on the season and two games in front of the second place Houston Texans with four games to play.

On Sunday, the Colts host the Cleveland Browns.

All season, the Colts have played best in pass defense when Vontae Davis and Greg Toler were the cornerbacks at the same time.

However, on Sunday against the Browns, the Colts will have to do without one of the two.

Davis, who is having a Pro-Bowl type season and who has not given up a single TD in the past 942 snaps, will miss the game due to an injury.

Chuck Pagano the head coach for the colts officially ruled Davis out for the game due to a concussion. The cornerback suffered his concussion during the second half of the Colts game versus the Washington Redskins.

Pagano said the team did not have any alternative and the backup players had to step in and play well.

It is expected that Darius Butler will start in place of Davis opposite Toler.

The problems might start once Cleveland enters a three wide set and Butler slides inside to cover the slot receiver. The depth in the Colts secondary drops off tremendously between Toler, Butler and the team’s fourth cornerback Josh Gordy.

Washington, Pittsburgh and Houston constantly threw at Gordy when he had extensive playing time.

Opposition quarterbacks have completed 18 of their 28 passes for 305 yards, 4 TDs and no interceptions throwing at Gordy this season.

There is not any other option beyond Gordy, as the Colts released Loucheiz Purifoy a promising rookie for unknown disciplinary reasons on Thanksgiving Day.

The fourth corner is now Jalil Brown who has an injured ankle and is questionable. Colt Anderson the Colts safety can play at cornerback if Indy needs him to.

The Colts will have to face Josh Gordon the Browns big play wide receiver.

Gordon has returned from his suspension as if he never left. He has 15 receptions in the two games since returning for 195 yards.

The Colts cannot just simply have Gordon shadowed by Toler. Outside of a few snaps against Pittsburgh, Toler has almost always lined up on the left.

Where they play said Greg Manusky the defensive coordinator for the Colts is a player preference. One might feel better back pedaling on one side than on the other. Other plays are able to flip but Toler likes the left, but the possibility exists he will lineup opposite Gordon on Sunday.

Regardless of where Toler plays, the Colts defensive secondary will miss Davis and be pressed even more if the defensive front seven cannot pressure Brian Hoyer the Browns starting quarterback.

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