Peyton Manning will not participate in Colts practices the rest of the season.
Two days after the four-time league MVP was ruled out of the Colts’ final two games, coach Jim Caldwell said Tuesday that Manning won’t practice with the team before the season-finale Jan. 1, either.
The reason is simple: Indianapolis doesn’t want to take away practice snaps from Dan Orlovsky or Curtis Painter with the Colts (1-13) playing host to AFC South champion Houston (10-4) in their home finale Thursday night.
Caldwell said he also believes Manning will be better off recovering from his latest neck surgery through individual work.
Team vice chairman Bill Polian acknowledged Manning will fail his postseason physical, a move that will actually give the Colts more time to monitor Manning’s progression.
Colts officials say it is not a setback, and, in fact, Polian said Manning threw with decent velocity from 20 to 25 yards last week.
FALCONS: Moved closer to having a healthy secondary against Drew Brees and the Saints.
Starting cornerback Brent Grimes, who has missed three games after surgery on his right knee, returned to practice on Tuesday but has not yet been cleared for Monday night’s game at New Orleans.
Coach Mike Smith gave an encouraging report on Grimes.
“We have not gotten final confirmation if he’s going to be ready for the game, but he sure looked good out here today,” he said. “We need to see how he feels tomorrow and hopefully he’ll be back out here on Thursday and get ready for our preparation.”
BENGALS: Receiver A.J. Green raised his right arm to shoulder level and smiled.
The rookie from Georgia felt noticeable improvement Tuesday in his sprained right shoulder, an indication he’ll be ready for the next game with playoff implications. He got hurt Sunday during a 20-13 win at St. Louis that kept Cincinnati (8-6) tied for the final wild card spot.
The first-round pick is the most valuable receiver in an offense that has hit a lull lately.
PACKERS: Placed tackle Derek Sherrod on injured reserve and signed tackle Herb Taylor to provide offensive line depth.
Sherrod, the team’s first-round pick in the 2011 draft, broke his right leg in the Packers’ loss at Kansas City on Sunday.
Taylor, a 6-foot-4, 305-pound third-year player, played in 18 games with one start for the Chiefs from 2007-08.
COWBOYS: Running back Felix Jones missed practice Tuesday because of hamstring tightness. That left Dallas with two running backs who weren’t even on an NFL roster a few weeks ago.
Sammy Morris, who made his season debut last week, split time at practice with Chauncey Washington, who signed with the Cowboys practice squad Nov. 30.
Coach Jason Garrett says he’s hopeful that Jones will be able to practice some this week and be ready for Saturday’s game against Philadelphia.
If not, Morris is the most logical choice to start since running backs DeMarco Murray and Phillip Tanner are on injured reserve.
BILLS: Tight end Lee Smith has been placed on injured reserve after the rookie free agent hurt his left ankle last weekend.
With Smith going on the season-ending list Tuesday, the Bills now have 16 players – including nine regulars – on IR.