Indianapolis Colts coach Frank Reich couldn’t wait to start working with quarterback Carson Wentz on the field.
He'll have to wait at least five more weeks — perhaps longer.
Just minutes after running his first training camp practice, Reich announced Wentz would miss 5-12 weeks with a left foot injury. Wentz was injured during Thursday’s practice and spent several days debating recovery options before scheduling surgery for Monday in Indianapolis.
“The next couple days were a discussion over whether we can leave it [the bone fragment] in there. We can leave it in there, try to manage it, see how it holds up over the year,” Reich said. “We wanted what was the more predictable outcome. It was like what’s the most predictable outcome? Let’s get the piece out of there and begin the rehab process.”
Team officials believe they'll have a better timeline a couple weeks into Wentz's recovery.
Offensive coordinator Marcus Brady said Wentz left practice early Thursday after feeling a twinge in his foot.
What doctors found, Reich said, was an old high school injury that Wentz was likely unaware of. They told the Colts that Wentz could play through the pain but Indy decided to play it safe.
Indy's season opener, Sept. 12 against Seattle, is almost six weeks out. A 12-week absence would keep Wentz out of seven games.
“I'm always optimistic," Reich said. “But just knowing Carson, I'm optimistic, knowing this is the type of injury you don't have to be pain-free to play with. I know Carson's level of toughness. I know he can play with pain."
For Wentz, it's yet another addition to an already long injury list.
He had surgery on a broken bone at the base of his right thumb in 2015; a hairline rib fracture in August 2016; a fractured vertebrae in his back during the 2018 season; and a concussion in January 2020. His best season, 2017, was derailed by a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee.
Vikings short on QBs
The Minnesota Vikings started their second week of training camp with a severe shortage of quarterbacks, with Kirk Cousins and two of his backups sidelined under COVID-19 protocols.
Coach Mike Zimmer has not made any secret of his frustration with those players who so far have declined to get vaccinated for the disease.
“I just don’t understand. I think we could put this thing to bed if we all do this. But it is what it is,” Zimmer said, after Cousins, Kellen Mond and Nate Stanley were placed on the NFL’s reserve list for COVID-19.
The trio was first held out of practice on Saturday night, with only third-year player Jake Browning remaining on the roster to run the offense. The Vikings also signed quarterback Case Cookus for emergency help on Monday before resuming their work on the field on Monday.
QB Allen, Bills set deadline on talks for long-term extension
Bills general manager Brandon Beane said he is giving himself before the start of the regular season to negotiate a long-term extension with quarterback Josh Allen before putting off discussions until next year.
Beane wouldn’t specify an exact date in saying the sides have agreed to suspend talks before Week 1 in September as not to serve as a distraction for the fourth-year starter, whose rookie contract runs through the end of the 2022 season.
“Josh and I are in lockstep on that,” Beane said during a brief interview after practice. “There will be no negotiating in-season. At some point we will press the pause button.”
Giants add RB Morris
The New York Giants added depth to the running game in case star Saquon Barkley isn’t ready for the start of the regular season coming off a major knee injury. The Giants re-signed Alfred Morris, a 10-year veteran who played nine games for coach Joe Judge last season … Nick Chubb signed a three-year, $36.6 million contract extension with the Cleveland Browns … Tennessee Titans first-round draft pick Caleb Farley took his first training camp snaps. The cornerback and this spring’s 22nd overall draft selection was activated from the non-football injury list, where he’d been designated while rehabilitating from a pair of back surgeries.