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Colts Monday Update: Pagano says team hopes to have Swoope soon, Luck will not practice

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NFL: Indianapolis Colts at Minnesota Vikings Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

There rumor mill has been running on overdrive since late last week. We have learned that Andrew Luck has visited with specialists to try to figure out what is causing the soreness in his surgically repaired throwing shoulder. We have learned that numerous Colts veterans are being shopped prior to the trade deadline on Tuesday — including Frank Gore, Vontae Davis, and T.Y. Hilton. We have also learned that some players who have been injured all season are nearing their returns — a list that includes Clayton Geathers, Erik Swoope, and Denzelle Good.

ANDREW LUCK UPDATES

In pertinent part, both Colts head coach Chuck Pagano and general manager Chris Ballard shared some thoughts on Luck’s status. Ballard confirmed that Luck has “already visited a couple of specialists to get some answers on his right shoulder.” Ballard also stated that “Andrew has exhausted every avenue to try to get ready and get back and play. And that was our hope also.”

This could have been a mistake but it could also indicate that the team is seriously considering shutting Luck down for the year.

Pagano struck a similar tone:

We’re going to exhaust all resources because the best interest is the player and his long-term (health) and we’ve said that. It’s for the next 10-12 years for this guy, for any player. So before we put any player out there, we’re going to make sure he’s right.

We want the kid healthy. Nobody is more frustrated than him. He wants to be out there with his teammates, battling, so it isn’t fun for anybody. But it is what it is, so we’ll just keep plugging away.

Again, they’re going to take their time with Luck this season and not rush him back onto the field until they know he is right. This is a long-term play from a health perspective. However, Kevin Bowen of 1070 the Fan reported that where Pagano differed from Ballard is that he indicated that he still expects to see Luck back on the field in 2017.

No matter which way Luck’s status breaks for the year, at this point there is a growing likelihood that answers will come sooner, rather than later. We’re quickly approaching a point in the season where the value in Luck’s return might be significantly outweighed by the value of his roster spot.

INJURED PLAYERS NEARING A RETURN?

While the Colts don’t practice until Wednesday, Pagano provided an update on some of the injured players the team hopes to get back onto the field soon. Starting right tackle Denzelle Good returned to practice for the first time last week and will continue work with the team at practice this week. Safety Clayton Geathers will also have his second straight week of practice, though he will likely continue to wear a red non-contact jersey.

Another player who might re-join the team from the injured reserve is Erik Swoope. Coming into the season, Swoope had generated a lot of excitement. His role expanded in 2016 and he showed that he is capable of presenting a challenge to defenses as a receiving option. It appears that he is nearing a return to practice and should get back onto the field in 2017.

The future is somewhat less certain on the outlook for key starters John Simon and Rashaan Melvin. Simon’s status has yet to be decided and Melvin is still in the concussion protocol.

TRADE RUMOR MILL

Much has been said regarding Indianapolis Colts veterans who may be available to other teams via trade. To this point, Vontae Davis, Frank Gore, and T.Y. Hilton have all been mentioned as pieces who could be available to other teams for the right offer.

General Manager Chris Ballard stated that it will take “a lot” for the Colts to move any of their veterans prior to Tuesday’s deadline. This is consistent with other reports, specifically regarding trade offers for T.Y. Hilton, claiming that the Colts asking price is too high for a deal to get done.

A lot can happen in 24 hours, and while it wouldn’t be surprising to see the Colts move a player or two, there is a very good chance that the deadline comes and goes without a single change.