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TE Garrett Graham (concussion) cleared to play


Texans tight end Garrett Graham has been cleared to play in Week 15 against Indianapolis after missing Monday's game with a concussion.

Graham practiced all last week but did not travel with the team for the game. He had one more concussion test to pass per NFL protocol, and coach Gary Kubiak said Thursday afternoon that Graham had passed it.

Graham played in the first 12 games of the season with  six starts, catching 25 passes for 243 yards and three touchdowns. Without him, the Texans were down to two healthy tight ends against the New England Patriots, changing the shape of an offense that relies heavily on two- and three-tight end sets.

Kubiak also said Thursday that right tackle Derek Newton is making progress and likely to play on Sunday. Newton has been out since suffering a right knee injury at Detroit on Thanksgiving.

Inside linebacker Darryl Sharpton missed a second consecutive day of practice on Thursday with a toe injury. Kubiak expects him to practice on Friday, which would bode well for his chances to play against the Colts. Cornerback Alan Ball did not practice again Thursday because of a foot injury.  Outside linebacker Brooks Reed is out with a groin injury and likely at least another week or two away from returning.

Punter Donnie Jones returned to practice after sitting out Wednesday with soreness in his right (non-kicking leg) knee. Jones was limited on Thursday.

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