Jonathan Taylor doesn't know exactly when he injured his thumb during the Colts' Week 12 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. At one point, the Colts running back said something felt "kind of weird," so he got his thumb wrapped – thinking he jammed it – and went back into the game.
It wasn't until after the Colts' win Taylor discovered he tore a ligament in his thumb. Initially, he hoped to play through the injury, but learned the only solution was undergoing surgery.
"You kind of just don't have any power (holding the ball)," Taylor said. "You have power but your body won't let you — it's like, I'm squeezing, but it's not giving me anything."
And, Taylor added: "I don't know anybody that wants to get cut open at all."
Taylor did not practice in the days leading up to the Colts' Week 13-15 games, but was listed as a full participant in Wednesday's walk-through at the Indiana Farm Bureau Football Center. That was a step in the right direction, but Thursday's full-go practice was always going to be more telling for Taylor's chances of playing on Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons.
"It depends on how today goes, and tomorrow," Taylor said. "Really today — this will tell you a lot, the first full speed day."
In seven games (five starts) this season, Taylor has 414 rushing yards on 100 carries (4.1 yards/attempt) with four touchdowns; he also has 16 catches for 137 yards with a touchdown as well. His most productive game of the year came against Tampa Bay, in which he carried 15 times for 91 yards with two touchdowns.
Having to miss time in the middle of a playoff race was tough for Taylor, but he also trusted the Colts' other running backs – Zack Moss, Trey Sermon and Tyler Goodson – to get the job done in his absence. Sermon and Goodson combined for 157 yards on 28 carries in the Colts' 30-13 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Saturday.
"For me personally, I was sick," Taylor said. "I knew we would be good as a team because I know the guys we have, the players we have, the mentality we have. I was just sick because I'm like man, another one? I just had my first (surgery). No one likes getting cut open. At all."
Taylor has been able to stay in shape while rehabbing his thumb, and once he's cleared to return he expects to hit the ground running – pun very much intended – whenever that may be. And after a challenging few weeks of sitting out, Taylor is mostly excited to get back on the field and help the Colts make a push for the playoffs.
"It sucks when it's something that seems minor, and you're like, of course it was my dominant hand," Taylor said with a sigh. "Very anxious to get back out there."
Thursday's practice report: