Michael Marot, Ap Sports Writer
Updated Three:27 pm, Thursday, November 9, 2017
Photo: Daniel Gluskoter, AP
Photo: Daniel Gluskoter, AP
Colts launch Vontae Davis after publicly airing complaints
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — One day after Vontae Davis complained publicly about how the Indianapolis Colts dealt with his demotion, his locker was empty and the two-time Pro Bowl cornerback was gone.
After 5½ seasons in Indy, it was over simply that quick.
“I’ve been around a while,” security Darius Butler mentioned Thursday after Davis was launched. “I’ve seen Randy Moss get traded, I’ve seen Peyton Manning get cut, so I can’t say I’m surprised.”
The transfer got here precisely one week after Indy put injured quarterback Andrew Luck on injured reserve, ending his season. Now, they’re additionally lacking their longest-tenured defensive participant.
But the twists and turns that led to Davis’ departure have been quick and unusual.
As phrase leaked that the Colts may deal Davis earlier than final week’s NFL buying and selling deadline, Davis instructed reporters Indianapolis would at all times have a particular place in his coronary heart.
By Saturday, he misplaced his beginning job and stayed residence as his teammates traveled to Houston. The official motive listed by the staff was “non-injury related.”
All coach Chuck Pagano merely mentioned repeatedly was that he made the choice.
On Wednesday, Davis responded by claiming he by no means totally recovered from the torn groin he suffered in the course of the Colts’ third preseason recreation and that the harm prevented him from taking part in as much as his normally excessive requirements.
Since then, normal supervisor Chris Ballard has twice mentioned on radio interviews the Colts have been unaware of any lingering issues with Davis’ groin till Wednesday.
The harm wasn’t Davis’ solely criticism. He thought Pagano, who attended his wedding ceremony two years in the past, ought to have knowledgeable him of the demotion somewhat than defensive coordinator Ted Monachino.
“It should be more about the respect. I’m a professional,” Davis mentioned. “I’ve been in (the league) long enough. When I look at the situation, I feel like there was no respect. Knowing Chuck, I figured it would come from him. It really bothered me.”
Then Davis apparently took it a step additional.
On Thursday afternoon, Ballard was requested a few report from The Indianapolis Star that Davis had determined to have season-ending surgical procedure after getting extra medical opinions.
“That was a surprise, that was a surprise,” Ballard mentioned.
It made it a good simpler name for the Colts (Three-6), who host Pittsburgh (6-2) on Sunday.
With the 29-year-old Davis within the last 12 months of a four-year, $36 million contract, the prospect of him re-signing already appeared bleak. Indy drafted two cornerbacks in April and has been impressed with final week’s starters — Rashaan Melvin and Pierre Desir.
All 4 gamers are youthful, and can value the Colts far much less cash to maintain than Davis.
Add the verbal spat and the potential for Davis not taking part in once more this season, and the choice was straightforward.
“This isn’t about one guy. Nobody’s bigger than the team. I’m not. Nobody is,” Pagano mentioned throughout a short and shock look Thursday. “We love Vontae, I love Vontae and I’m grateful for the contributions he’s made. But we’re putting this to bed. We’re not going to talk about it anymore.”
It’s not the primary time Davis has been caught up in a public controversy.
He additionally was demoted throughout coaching camp in 2012 for not being in adequate form to maintain up together with his Miami teammates. Three weeks later, he was traded from the Dolphins to the Colts.
Both of these episodes aired as a part of the HBO collection “Hard Knocks.”
This time could possibly be more durable to just accept.
Davis began the season with hopes of rising because the Colts’ new defensive chief after Robert Mathis’ retirement. From the opening practices, coaches raved about his play.
Then he damage his groin, missed greater than a month and by no means fairly obtained again to the place he wished to be.
“My tape isn’t horrible but my tape isn’t me,” Davis mentioned Wednesday.
He had 21 tackles, no interceptions and two pbades defensed this season.
In 9 seasons, the primary three with Miami, Davis began 112 of 120 video games, had 399 tackles, two sacks, 97 pbades defensed, and 22 interceptions, returning one for a rating.
“I wish him the best and we will continue to do the best for the team,” Ballard mentioned. “This was the right thing.”
NOTES: Starting defensive finish Henry Anderson additionally will miss the remainder of the season after being placed on injured reserve with a laryngeal fracture. He was injured throughout Sunday’s recreation when he obtained hit within the throat. … The Colts additionally promoted receiver Matt Hazel from the apply squad to the lively roster and added receiver KeVonn Mabon to the apply squad.
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