Indianapolis Colts head coach Bruce Arians said today in his media availability that starting running back Donald Brown will miss 2-3 weeks due to a knee injury suffered on the final 2-point conversion play in the fourth quarter. Arians said Brown had surgery to repair torn knee cartilage on Tuesday and will be out for Sunday’s game and beyond.
Brown, is the Colts’ leading rusher this season with gaining 239 yards on 60 carries. He also has one touchdown to his credit and was having one of his most effective seasons since moving into the full-time starting role for the first time in his career.
Brown was also expected to have a big game Sunday as the New York Jets have the 31st ranked rush defense and lack the ability to tackle running backs who break out to the outside. That’s exactly what Brown is good at doing and was predicted to have a huge day on Sunday.
He is coming off of a great day last Sunday against the Green Bay Packers where he had 84 yards on 17 carries.
In his place, rookie Vick Ballard will get the start and get most of the carries. Arians did say that second year back Delone Carter will also get some snaps and play a bigger role on Sunday. Ballard, could have a break out game as he’s not just good between the tackles but he’s extremely fast to break to the outside. He broke several big runs in the preseason and looked as if he could carry this offense one day out of the backfield.
Ballard has 42 yards on 21 carries this year with his longest rush being nine yards. Carter has yet to get a carry this season and he looks to move back into a playing role. This would have been his chance to start this year but he was fumble prone last season and moved down the depth chart. He was going to get a second chance this year but suffered an injury in the first preseason game against the St. Louis Rams and wasn’t healthy until the start of the season.
This is definitely going to be a game where both backs can have a breakout type of effort. Many are saying the starting running back on next year’s team isn’t on the roster yet. This is a perfect game where the duo can show they can be a big part of this offense for years to come.