Caldwell and Kubiak face injury decisions

October, 7, 2010
10/07/10
5:42
PM ET
Jim Caldwell’s issue may be “solved” by another injury. Gary Kubiak will probably try to use one too.

Two AFC South coaches face semi-sticky situations with starters returning to health while their subs have been upgrades.

For Indianapolis, Austin Collie’s expanded role with Pierre Garcon out has made for great production. If both players were available, I’d say Collie needs to stay on the field as the second starter, moving inside when Garcon comes on in three-wide. But while Garcon looks like he will be back, Collie could be out. He didn’t practice Wednesday or Thursday with a foot injury. If he doesn’t play, Caldwell doesn’t have to decide. Garcon would start with Reggie Wayne, with Blair White the third receiver.

For Houston, it was a blessing that Eugene Wilson’s hamstring kept him out last week. Dominique Barber and Troy Nolan filled in, Nolan pulled in two opportunistic interceptions and Kubiak said he’s earned more time. But Wilson’s practicing this week and the Texans aren’t revealing their plans. Kubiak would be wise to start Nolan, even if it means stretching it and saying Wilson isn’t quite ready to return.

I know most coaches abide by the starters-can’t-lose-their-jobs-to-injury bromide. But Collie’s been better as a starter than Garcon was. And Nolan is an upgrade over Wilson right now.

Getting the better guy on the field more increases the chances to win, thus trumping anything else.

Paul Kuharsky | email

ESPN Tennessee Titans reporter

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