As we mentioned earlier today, the Colts got a defensive lineman back today. Arthur Jones came off of the reserve/suspended list and was back in the building. Head coach Chuck Pagano confirmed that the team requested and received a roster exemption for him, meaning that they won’t have to make a move right away on their 53-man roster.
They’ll now have a week before they have to do so, and during that time they’ll get to see where Art Jones is at and what he can contribute.
“Yeah, Art was back in the building today,” Pagano said today. “It was good to have Art back. He’s on the exempt list, so we basically have a week to kind of get him back in the fold, see where he’s at. He looked good. We’ve got to get him back, he hasn’t been on the field in a month, obviously. Looks like he’s in good shape, and we’ll find out - we get him back on the grass, get him back in pads, get him practicing, those type of things and see where he’s at from a physical standpoint, a mental standpoint, and then go from there.”
How big is it to get Jones back?
“It’s great,” Pagano said. “Anytime you get, it’s like you get Henry [Anderson] back off of injury and finally get him out there playing and you try to ramp up his reps with every game. And so anytime you get a player back that’s got ability to play winning football for you and add depth and those kinds of things, it’s good.”
It will be interesting to see what the Colts decide to do with Jones. After all, they obviously liked him enough to give him a big contract in the 2014 offseason, but he’s played in just nine games with the team since then. He suffered an injury that hampered him for much of the 2014 season, and then suffered another injury that caused him to miss the entire 2015 season. He was still working his way back from injury in training camp and preseason this year and was often an afterthought, and then he missed the first four weeks of the season due to a suspension for violating the league’s PED policy. So, in other words, it has been nearly two years since the Colts saw Jones on the field playing significant snaps and in a meaningful game, so the situation right now is very much an unknown.
Where will Jones fit in? Will he play on Sunday or be inactive as he works his way back? These are questions that the Colts will contemplate this week as they watch Jones get back on the practice field, and they have the luxury of being able to wait and see this week before having to make the final move for the 53-man roster due to the roster exemption.