ANDERSON, Ind. -- A daily review of hot topics coming out of Indianapolis Colts training camp:
The players didn’t waste any time loading up their cars and speeding out of the parking lot at Anderson (Indiana) University to head back home after spending the past three weeks in training camp. “Offense, defense and special teams, individually, I think we’ve seen everybody make strides,” coach Chuck Pagano said. “We’ve seen everybody get better. I think as long as we stay on track and avoid the injury bug. If we stay healthy ... I think this team has the potential to do some great things this year."
Quarterback Andrew Luck will play against the visiting Giants on Saturday (7 p.m. ET). How much he plays will likely depend on how successful the offense is, according to Pagano. “That's the plan right now, and then we'll see how that goes,” the coach said. “If we have two drives like we had in the first ballgame, you've got a 10, 12-play drive and you've got a couple scores, then it might be time to pull him if that happens before the first quarter. So we'll just play it by ear." Receiver T.Y. Hilton will play despite not practicing the previous two days.
Pagano had hoped for rookie offensive lineman Jack Mewhort to practice Wednesday after not practicing the previous three days. That didn’t happen. Mewhort had offseason knee surgery and was pulled from practice early last Saturday. "He could have went, but I held him,” Pagano said. “I was just making sure that thing's all right." As far as other key players go, the Colts are going to take a wait-and-see approach with running back Ahmad Bradshaw. Bradshaw didn’t play against the New York Jets last week and he’s wearing a red no-contact jersey in practice. “We'll see where he's at from a physical standpoint (Friday), see how he's feeling and then make a decision if we want to play him or not," Pagano said.
There were a lot of nervous players standing on the field late Wednesday morning. They had put the final 40 minutes of practice in the hands of special teams coaches Tom McMahon and Brant Boyer. Catch the kickoff off the Jugs machine and Pagano would end training camp early. Drop the ball and the final practice continues. Two tries, one catch. That's all it took for the celebration to take place. Practice ended -- and the celebration began -- after the first kick. “(McMahon’s) a gamer,” Pagano said. “I found out he's a gamer, so good job Tommy."