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Jonathan Taylor’s 21-day practice window will begin for the Colts



Indianapolis, Indiana – Jonathan Taylor will feel the ticking of the clock.

After Sunday’s game against the Los Angeles Rams, the Indianapolis Colts intend to begin the 21-day window for their irate running back to resume practicing and return to the field, according to a source with knowledge of the issue. The development was initially reported by NFL Network.

Taylor needs to clear a physical first.

Since August 29th, the NFL’s 2021 rushing champion has been placed on the reserve-physically unable-to-perform list. He reported that after surgery on January 26, he was still experiencing pain in his right ankle.

This has made Taylor’s request for a contract extension more difficult. His rookie contract, which pays him $4.3 million this season, is coming to an end. That is significantly less than what a running back of his quality would be paid.

That request for an extension is at the heart of the Colts/Taylor standoff. Taylor requested a trade when the team told him it wouldn’t discuss a new contract until after this season.

By the end of training camp, owner Jim Irsay gave in and let Taylor pursue a trade, despite his original insistence that the Colts wouldn’t move their star back. Miami and Green Bay apparently expressed strong interest, but nothing came of it.

In theory, a trade is still feasible. General manager Chris Ballard, though, is unwavering in his praise for Taylor.

“Jonathan is valuable,’’ he said prior to the season. “I’m not going to just let him walk out the door. I’m not going to do that.

“That’s not in the best thing for the Colts and the organization.’’

Taylor has reportedly departed the Colts’ headquarters after working out, but he has been continuing his rehabilitation there. Throughout all three games, including the opening contest at Lucas Oil Stadium versus Jacksonville, he has not been on the sidelines.

Regarding Taylor’s situation with the Colts, the organization has to decide whether to place him on PUP for the duration of the season or add him to the active roster at the end of the 21-day window. At any time during that period, he could be added to the active roster.

When Taylor comes back, he strengthens a Zack Moss-led backfield. Moss, who missed the opening, is ranked ninth in the NFL in terms of rushing touchdowns with 240.

“JT’s a helluva player. Everyone knows that, right?’’ Moss said. “At the end of the day, my job is to be ready when my number’s called. So, doesn’t matter how many times my number’s called. It’s what I’m going to do with those opportunities.

“It’s not going to be any negativity obviously when he comes back. It wasn’t like that anyways last year. He’s a great guy.

“I’m happy to go get back out there with him in this style offense. One, it keeps him healthy, keeps myself healthy throughout a year like this. As long as those things are (resulting) in wins, I don’t really think no one cares what the stats look like, what the carries look like as long as we’re coming out with a W.’’

You can follow Mike Chappell on Twitter at @mchappell51.