INDIANAPOLIS – Jonathan Taylor is back, and the Indianapolis Colts’ star running back made it crystal clear he’s looking ahead, not at what was a contentious past.
He also did little to address his long-term commitment to the team.
During an 11-minute press conference Thursday – his first public comments since mid-June – Taylor expressed eagerness to attack his first full practice.
“My No. 1 goal is really to attack this first practice,’’ he said. “It’s been over 290 days, so my main goal has been to attack this first day.’’
As for whether he’s “all-in’’ on returning to the Colts, Taylor was evasive. He’s in the final year of his rookie contract that pays him $4.3 million, and much of his offseason quarrel with the team focused on his desire for an extension. When that didn’t materialize, Taylor requested a trade.
“Right now I’m here,’’ he said a couple of times.
“I don’t think it matters if I say I’m committed or not because I’m here. If somebody wasn’t committed, they wouldn’t be here.’’
Taylor was placed on the active-physically unable-to-perform list at the start of training camp and moved to reserve-PUP on Aug. 29.
That latter roster move required him to miss the first four games of the season. He finally passed his physical this week following prolonged rehab from Jan. 26 surgery on his right ankle and was designated to return to practice.
Taylor insisted several times his No. 1 goal in the past several months was to make certain his right ankle was fully recovered.
Given several opportunities to address his disagreements with the Colts, Taylor refused.
Shane Steichen hasn’t ruled out the possibility of Taylor playing Sunday when the Colts entertain the Tennessee Titans at Lucas Oil Stadium.
This story will be updated.
You can follow Mike Chappell on Twitter at @mchappell51.