The Indianapolis Colts today took the practice field at their West 56th Street complex to begin the first practice of their three-day minicamp this week, and one of the most encouraging signs today was that wide receiver Donte Moncrief is no longer in a walking boot.
Moncrief underwent a procedure on his left foot earlier this offseason that has so far kept him sidelined through the offseason workouts. The Indianapolis Star's Stephen Holder said that Moncrief didn't do much in practice today but did have a helmet, which signifies progress in his return to the field.
The injury situations are often the things we can learn the most from at this time of year, as so much else is in constant flux and subject to change. It's especially worth paying attention to those players who aren't practicing, though it's also nothing to freak out about if someone misses OTAs. For Moncrief, however, it's important that he stays on the field and gets as many reps as possible since he figures to play a major role in the offense in 2016. T.Y. Hilton returns as the number one wideout, but Moncrief will be the number two behind him (with Phillip Dorsett the number three). After those three there is no proven depth, which could make health an even more important part.
Furthermore, the Colts need Moncrief to not only be healthy but also productive. He had a nice sophomore season a year ago in catching 64 passes for 733 yards and six scores, and the team is hoping he can build on that success this year - especially since he'll be able to play more with Andrew Luck.
The good news is that Moncrief's injury isn't expected to cause him to miss time in training camp and was more an issue of getting things taken care of, as the injury seemed to hinder him as the season went on last year. Hopefully, the time taken to get that right pays dividends this year and helps him stay fully healthy. It has meant missing most of the offseason program, but Moncrief is now out of a walking boot and figures to be just fine when training camp rolls around.