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Andrew Luck of Indianapolis Colts to miss season opener


INDIANAPOLIS — The Colts have officially ruled Andrew Luck out for Sunday’s game at the Los Angeles Rams, and the quarterback is still not to the point where he can practice, general manager Chris Ballard said Monday.

“Still no timetable,” Ballard said about Luck practicing. “He’s in the training phase right now. He’s done excellent in his rehab, and we’re still continuing to take it week to week.”

Scott Tolzien will start against the Rams. Jacoby Brissett, whom the Colts acquired from the New England Patriots for wide receiver Phillip Dorsett over the weekend, will be Tolzien’s backup.

Luck, who was taken off the physically unable to perform list Saturday, has not done any on-field work with his teammates since Week 17 of last season. He underwent right shoulder surgery in January after originally getting injured in Week 3 of the 2015 season.

Had the Colts kept Luck on the PUP list, he would have been required to miss the first six weeks of the regular season.

The biggest reason the Colts are not putting Luck on the practice field yet is because they want him to practice full-time. Luck was limited in practice at least one day per week every week last season.

“I think we need to think about this with every player. Every player needs to practice,” Ballard said. “[They] need to be with their teammates, they need to be able to practice, and Andrew is going to need the same thing. That came in a lot with the decision of the PUP because, when he is back, we want to incorporate him back into practice.

“I think Andrew will tell you, ‘I want to get back to where I can practice every day, I can throw to our receivers every day, I can feel the pocket, I can feel the pressure every day.’ We want to get back to that point. That’s why I’m being extra conservative here to where I want to make sure when we get Andrew back, he can practice every day. It’ll be a little bit of a process to get him to that. But we will. We don’t want to jeopardize for the short term here over the long haul. Andrew is a young player still, and we have to have a long-term view of where we’re going.”

Luck took every meaningful snap during the first three years of his career as the Colts reached the playoffs each season. But he has missed 10 games over the past two years as Indianapolis finished 8-8 and missed the playoffs in both 2016 and 2017.

“Any time you’re hurt, as a player you’re part of the team but you’re not because you’re not going through practice, you’re not doing the daily activities with them,” Ballard said. “That’s hard. When you’re a competitor — and he is a rare competitor; you’ve seen it — that’s hard for guys. But we visited [Sunday] for a long time, and he is in a really good place right now.”

In other injury news, Ballard confirmed that cornerback Vontae Davis would be out a few weeks. Davis suffered what the team called a significant groin injury on Aug. 26 against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Earlier Monday, the Colts placed tight end Erik Swoope on injured reserve. He has been sidelined with a knee injury.



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