Sprained knee sidelines Andre Johnson for Sunday

Updated: September 19, 2007, 2:04 PM ET
Associated Press

HOUSTON -- Houston Texans receiver Andre Johnson ruled out playing against Indianapolis this week as he recovers from a knee sprain.

Andre Johnson


Asked Wednesday if there was any chance he could play against the Colts, Johnson said: "No. I mean as it looks right now, you look at me right now, no I wouldn't be out there on Sunday."

The news is a major blow to a team that is 2-0 for the first time in franchise history and preparing to face a major AFC South foe. Rookie Jacoby Jones, who has two catches for 33 yards, will probably start in Johnson's place. Second receiver Kevin Walter has just two receptions for 17 yards.

Johnson, who wore a large brace on his injured left knee Wednesday, said he is unsure of when he can return but didn't rule out next week's game.

"I'm taking it day-by-day, week-by-week, and doing everything I can to strengthen my leg so I can be back," he said.

An MRI Monday revealed no damage that would require surgery. Coach Gary Kubiak listed Johnson's official status for Sunday as doubtful.

Johnson sprained his knee during the fourth quarter of the Texans 34-21 win over the Panthers on Sunday. He fell awkwardly on the knee after a 10-yard reception and remained on the turf for several minutes. He walked off the field on his own but was limping on the sideline.

Johnson, who has missed just three games in his five-year career, said being on the sidelines Sunday will be difficult.

"I'll probably be the team's biggest cheerleader," he said. "I'm going to go out and encourage these guys as much as I can."

Johnson had seven catches for 120 yards and two touchdowns Sunday. His 262 yards receiving in the first two games rank fourth in the NFL.

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press