#Colts GM Chris Ballard confirms that QB Andrew Luck will not play Week 1. But he's on the active roster and will be practicing.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 4, 2017
It’s a story we’ve tracked for some time. In mid-August, Colts owner Jim Irsay hinted at the possibility. A few days later, we learned Colts C Ryan Kelly would be out early this season after undergoing foot surgery. And we confirmed today that in addition to Luck, CB Vontae Davis will also miss some time early on this season:
Ballard confirms that Vontae Davis will miss at least a few weeks. Again, a massive blow to the secondary.— Zak Keefer (@zkeefer) September 4, 2017
It sets up a very, very fortuitous situation for the Rams in Week 1. Perhaps in terms of narrative and the expectations game though, it’s a bit of a no-win situation.
The Rams now head into a Week 1 home game against a depleted Colts roster in which they’ll be expected to win. Instead of a win carrying the air of a franchise turning things around under new Head Coach Sean McVay providing QB Jared Goff with his first career NFL win, a victory on Sunday will only be painted as a gift from the injury timetables for the Colts. A loss? Calamitous. Inexcusable.
It’s worth holding some perspective of where we stand compared to a year ago. With the Rams having returned to Los Angeles, a new home fan base was eager to see a new product under Head Coach Jeff Fisher. A season-opening 0-28 loss to the hapless San Francisco 49ers underpinned what would ultimately be a failed season leading to Fisher’s firing.
McVay is under no job pressure in 2017. A loss won’t cost him his job. And a win won’t be the validation of his hiring Rams fans are hoping for. With the three players the Colts are without though, it may be a requirement if those hopes are to come to fruition in 2017.