Freeney discouraged he can't practice

MIAMI -- Indianapolis Colts All-Pro defensive end Dwight Freeney still hopes to play in the Super Bowl despite a torn ligament in his right ankle.

"Hopefully, towards the end of the week it starts to get better," Freeney said at Tuesday's media day. "The decision will come later on in the week. It's kind of early now."

Freeney said it's "very discouraging" not to be able to practice for Sunday's NFL title game against the New Orleans Saints.

"The competitor in me says they'll never stop me from being on the field," he said with a laugh before adding: "There's some pain there definitely with throwing everything at it, all types of techniques to find the best thing to get this thing as good as possible. You name it, I've probably done it."

"Obviously, the competitor in me says 'nothing is going to stop me,' but that said, it is not up to me -- it is up to the coach and the staff," he added.

Freeney injured the ankle in the AFC Championship Game nine days ago. He said chances of him practicing the rest of the week are not good. He's the only starter on either team who might miss the game because of injury.

"It's safe to say that I probably won't [practice]," Freeney said. "I'll probably stay off of it and just get ready," he said.

Freeney is listed as questionable on the Colts' injury report with a sprained right ankle. Coach Jim Caldwell has said Freeney has a third-degree, low-ankle sprain and is improving. A third-degree ankle sprain by definition involves a complete tear of an ankle ligament.

Freeney led the Colts with 13½ sacks and is considered the leader of a defense that has performed well in the playoffs.

Information from The Associated Press and Reuters was used in this report.