Colts upbeat about Freeney, Powers

Updated: February 5, 2010, 2:48 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- Indianapolis coach Jim Caldwell sounded optimistic Friday that defensive end Dwight Freeney could play against the New Orleans Saints in Sunday's Super Bowl.

"He's trending in the right direction," Caldwell said at his final pre-Super Bowl news conference.

Freeney has been receiving treatment several times daily since arriving in South Florida last week, trying to speed up the recovery after tearing a ligament in his right ankle during the Colts' AFC Championship Game victory against the New York Jets.

Earlier this week, Freeney said he believed he was improving. However, he still hasn't practiced with the team.

"He's getting better, but we'll see," Caldwell said. "It's still a day-to-day situation."

Freeney isn't the only injury concern for the Colts.

Offensive lineman Ryan Lilja has been bothered by a sore back and couldn't practice Thursday, but Caldwell said the team expects one of Peyton Manning's top blockers to be ready for the game.

It's still wait-and-see on cornerback Jerraud Powers and his ailing left foot.

Caldwell revealed Friday that Powers had "an internal fixation of a fractured foot," which typically means a plate or screws were inserted to hold a fracture in place.

Still, Caldwell sounded upbeat.

"[Powers] feels that he's going to be able to play," he said. "It's just kind of up to the doctors ... if he's able to run and run without any inhibitions whatsoever. He's moving along and moving well and we'll see."

If Powers can't play, the Colts will have a thinned-out secondary. Kelvin Hayden would be paired with Jacob Lacey, an undrafted rookie, with Tim Jennings working as the nickel and Aaron Francisco, T.J. Rushing or Jamie Silva possibilities as the sixth defensive back.

Powers said Wednesday that he hurt the foot in the first quarter of the divisional-round game. By the third quarter, he had a painful bruise on the right side of the foot, which made it difficult to play. Powers did not play in the AFC title game.

"It's coming along fine," Powers said. "I'm starting to cut and move on it, and there's no doubt in my mind that I'll be out there Sunday. I'm not sure about practice. I'm pretty sure the doctors will be pretty conservative about that."

Information from The Associated Press and ESPN.com AFC South blogger Paul Kuharsky was used in this report.