Don’t look now, Colts fans, but the Bills are severely banged up at wide receiver.
When the Indianapolis Colts were slated to face the Buffalo Bills in the first round of the playoffs, most analysts and pundits gave them a marginal chance at pulling off the upset.
We know underdogs often come out on top in the postseason, especially on wild card weekend, but those initial predictions were hardly scorching given how unstoppable Buffalo looked on offense over the final two months of the regular season.
However, as we inch closer to kickoff, it’s looking like the Colts have more than a puncher’s chance at knocking off the No. 2 seed Bills. According to Buffalo’s latest injury report, wideouts Stefon Diggs (oblique) and Cole Beasley (knee), are both listed as questionable for the game.
We would personally be shocked if both Diggs and Beasley opted out, but the fact that both wideouts are hobbled bodes tremendously well for the Colts’ secondary, which was really inconsistent down the stretch after a scalding hot start to the campaign.
Diggs and Beasley are undeniably quarterback Josh Allen’s favorite targets, so one of them being sidelined would be huge news for Indianapolis. For context, the former ranked first in the league in catches (127), receiving yards (1,535) and targets (166), as well as second in yards per game (95.9) and fourth in first downs (73).
Beasley, meanwhile, set career-highs across the board, including targets (107), receptions (82), receiving yards (967) and yards per reception (11.8). That uptick in volume didn’t hinder his dependability, either, as he ranked fourth among qualified wideouts in catch rate (76.6%).
Per the latest buzz, the expectation out of Buffalo is that Diggs, despite not practicing all week until getting in a limited session on Thursday, will be out there this weekend. Beasley, on the other hand, is a legitimate question mark after he missed the regular season finale against the Dolphins.
We don’t want to inject too much excitement into Colts fans, because beating Buffalo would still be a mountain of a challenge regardless of whether Diggs or Beasley play. However, you’d also be hard-pressed to deny that this update on their two leading receivers doesn’t improve the Colts’ chances at pulling off the upset.