GLENDALE, Ariz. — The Indianapolis Colts were dealt a substantial blow just hours before their game against the Arizona Cardinals on Saturday when linebacker Darius Leonard, receiver Zach Pascal and safety Khari Willis were all placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list.
Leonard and Willis are both starters.
The Colts already went into Saturday’s game shorthanded. Left guard Quenton Nelson, right guard Mark Glowinski, cornerback Rock Ya-Sin and defensive end Kemoko Turay are also on the reserve/COVID-19 list. Center Ryan Kelly will miss the game following the sudden death of his infant daughter.
If Leonard, Pascal, Willis and Nelson are all unvaccinated and they tested positive, they will also miss the Colts’ Week 17 game against the Las Vegas Raiders on Jan. 2.
Leonard, Nelson and Kelly were all named to the Pro Bowl team this week. Leonard, the leader on the Colts’ defense, has 107 tackles, six forced fumbles, three interceptions and two fumble recoveries on the season.
Nelson and Kelly are the anchors of the offensive line that has helped running back Jonathan Taylor lead the NFL in rushing yards (1,518) and rushing touchdowns (17).
The Colts, winners of five of their last six games, went into Saturday as the fifth seed in the AFC playoff hunt. But they’re far from a lock to make it, especially if COVID continues to hit the team’s key players. Only one loss separates teams seeded fifth through 13th in the AFC playoff race.