“The Colts plan to open the 21-day practice window Wednesday for star running back Jonathan Taylor, whose surgically repaired ankle is fully healthy after a stint on the physically unable to perform list against the backdrop of his offseason trade request, per sources,” write Rapoport and Pelissero.
“There have been no recent trade talks between the Colts and other teams, sources say, though one source insisted multiple teams remain interested in swinging a trade for Taylor, 24, and signing him to a new contract in line with the NFL’s top backs.”
Of course, Taylor is first eligible to be activated off of PUP starting after Week 4 on Monday. Once he begins practicing, the Colts will have 21 days then to decide whether to activate him to the active roster. He previously was ineligible to practice with the team.
Now, whether Taylor ultimately ends up playing for the Colts remains to be seen, as he’s still theoretically unhappy with his current contract situation and no progress has been made—although per Rapoport and Pelissero, Indianapolis is “open to addressing it.”
Colts running back Zack Moss has been productive in the interim period as the starter, featuring a very physical and hard nosed running style. However, he lacks some of the big play potential that Taylor typically provides in the Indy backfield:
“He bounces a run and it might go for 60 [yards],” Colts running backs coach DeAndre Smith said earlier this week regarding Taylor via ESPN’s Stephen Holder. “That’s what you need, those chunk plays. When [Colts running back] Zack [Moss] gets off a 20-plus yard run, those things are huge. So, if you get a guy who might be able to double that, it just makes the offense more explosive.”
Either way, it appears that Taylor will be returning to the field sooner rather than later, and his presence in the Colts backfield would provide a meaningful upgrade—especially given the ‘home run hitting potential’ in the RPO game with rookie quarterback Anthony Richardson, featuring some major running lanes and open space.