INDIANAPOLIS — The Indianapolis Colts on Monday held their first of two practices ahead of Thursday’s preseason finale against the Cincinnati Bengals. What all did we learn on the day?
Brissett leads the offense
Jacoby Brissett was leading the Colts’ first-team offense on Monday afternoon inside the indoor practice facility at the Indiana Farm Bureau Football Center.
That’s nothing new in terms of Brissett’s role since the start of the offseason workout program, but it is noteworthy for another much different reason: it was the team’s first practice since the retirement of Andrew Luck — and, therefore, it was Brissett’s first practice of the year as the team’s No. 1 quarterback.
Luck on Saturday night announced he was retiring from the National Football League after reaching what he called a “proverbial fork in the road” as he continued to deal with a painful calf/ankle injury, the effects of which he had been feeling for months.
After suffering a variety of injuries throughout his seven-year career, including a major shoulder injury he played through in 2016 that required season-ending surgery the following offseason, Luck said the “injury-pain-rehab cycle” that had dominated recent seasons had taken its toll.
Luck was officially placed on the Colts’ Reserve/Retired list on Sunday.
Brissett told reporters on Monday that he’s ready to take on the challenge of leading the offense moving forward, but doesn’t anticipate changing his approach on or off the field.
“At the end of the day when you’re working, you’re working,” Brissett said of his approach to Monday’s practice. “You just go on.”
Campbell, Lewis return
Monday’s practice also marked the much-anticipated return of rookie wide receiver Parris Campbell.
The second-round pick out of Ohio State had missed the Colts’ final 12 training camp practices at Grand Park Sports Campus in Westfield, Ind., as well as last week’s three practices back at the team’s West 56th Street facility, as he dealt with a nagging hamstring injury.
Head coach Frank Reich said that Campbell, who “had a really strong start” at camp before going down with his injury, now faces quite a bit of work to get back in the fold within the Colts’ offense. Indy opens its season on the road against the Los Angeles Chargers in 13 days.
“You’re a rookie, you need the reps,” Reich said Aug. 14. “He missed practices and OTAs, but Parris, I know this: he’s really smart, he’s hardworking, he’s got the right attitude, he’s got the right aptitude. But he’s still a first-year player. So, when he can get back in there, we’re going to have to be smart and look to kind of ramp him up gradually.”
Also returning to the practice field for the Colts on Monday were defensive tackle/end Tyquan Lewis and cornerback Marvell Tell III. Lewis had missed the team’s last couple of practices, as well as its preseason Week 2 and 3 contests, with a minor knee injury, according to Reich; Tell III had missed two practices, as well as Saturday’s preseason game against the Chicago Bears, with an undisclosed injury.
Others not seen participating in the open portion of practice available to be seen by the media on Monday: wide receiver Devin Funchess (not disclosed), running back Jordan Wilkins (foot), running back Jonathan Williams (chest) and defensive end Jabaal Sheard (knee).
Moore II sidelined
Kenny Moore II, one of the Colts’ top cornerbacks and its top option at nickel, showed up to Saturday’s preseason game against the Bears with a cast on his right hand — and now we know why.
Reich said Moore II suffered an injury to his thumb; the team is currently still evaluating his immediate status.
Moore II told reporters Monday that he suffered the injury jamming a wide receiver at the line of scrimmage, and doesn’t anticipate missing much time, if any, once the regular season rolls around.