Colts ‘hopeful and optimistic’ Shaquille Leonard is ready Week 1

·2 min read

The Indianapolis Colts haven’t given much information in the way of Shaquille Leonard’s status for the Week 1 regular-season opener against the Houston Texans.

The updates every week are more of the same and until Leonard gets back on the field to practice, it’s difficult to gauge what his timeline for return truly looks like.

Head coach Frank Reich told reporters Thursday that the team is hoping for the best but preparing for the worst in terms of Leonard’s situation.

“I’m hopeful and optimistic that he’s ready but you’re preparing as if he’s not going to be ready,” Reich said Thursday. “You prepare for the worst-case scenario.”

It still remains to be seen when Leonard will return to practice. He opened training camp on the PUP list after undergoing surgery on his back in June to correct a nerve issue that was causing pain in his calf and ankle.

Reich mentioned Leonard doing a lot of extra work to get on the field sooner, but it’s still a wait-and-see situation,

“He’s doing a lot of extra work and he’s getting his mind right ready to play. That’s exactly what needs to happen,” Reich said. “He’s got his mind ready to play. The players got to think he’s playing as soon as he can.”

In terms of how much practice Leonard needs before the Colts feel comfortable putting him in game action, Reich said it likely depends on how the final weeks of training camp go.

“I mean, every player is different. I think it’s going to depend on what it looks like those last couple of weeks before he gets on the field,” Reich said. “How much activity is he doing out here, what exactly is he doing, how much contact is there – some sled work, pad work, conditioning. The whole thing. So, we’ll kind of gauge it by that.”

It’s still a wait-and-see situation with The Maniac’s status and we likely won’t get much more information until he gets back on the field for practice.

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