Colts fear LB Brackett could be suspended after third illegal hit

INDIANAPOLIS -- Colts linebacker Gary Brackett almost certainly will be fined by the NFL after making helmet-to-helmet contact with a Tennessee Titans player Sunday.

The Colts just hope their defensive captain isn't suspended.

Brackett has been fined twice this season for illegal hits, and some believe a third such penalty could include a suspension.

League officials haven't yet suspended any players for illegal hits. If Brackett were to be the first, coach Jim Caldwell said the Colts, who open the playoffs Saturday night against the New York Jets, would appeal.

Brackett was called for an illegal blind-side block on Ken Amato just before halftime Sunday, a play on which the linebacker ran toward the Colts' goal line and hit the Titan from the side to spring Antoine Bethea for a return off a missed field-goal attempt.

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press

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