According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport (and multiple league sources), Indianapolis Colts star running back Jonathan Taylor has received an ‘excused absence,’ as he seeks ongoing medical treatment on his ankle off-site—and away from the team and its facility:
“Jonathan Taylor received an excused absence from practice, actually has not been with the team since at least yesterday,” said Rapoport. “He is, I’m told, away from the facility seeking treatment on his ankle. Remember, this is the same surgically repaired ankle that he really battled through all of last season so many different times.”
“. . . Now he’s going to be away from the team for a little bit to get the treatment that he needs and to make sure that he is absolutely 100% when the season begins.”
“Now, who he plays for when that season begins is a whole other topic that we’ve discussed and obviously his trade request is still outstanding. That is what is going on with Taylor today.”
ESPN’s Stephen Holder added that the team was previously made aware of Taylor’s plans to continue treatment of his injured ankle elsewhere, and that his absence from training camp practice is “expected to last several days.”
From my perspective, it’s hard to blame a player for wanting to get their body fully healthy and right before what’s a gruelingly long NFL season. From that perspective, I don’t have any real issue with Taylor entrusting his ongoing medical treatment with those professionals he trusts and values the most—and not necessarily the team’s provided training and medical staff. `
That being said, if such a maneuver is simply a ploy to try to generate more distance and separation from the Colts—in the hopes of further facilitating a trade to another NFL team, consider me not a big fan of such a disingenuous tactic.
It’ll be interesting to see whether that was “all-for-not” and if this latest medical maneuver by Taylor and his camp has an ulterior motive. Time will tell.