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Andrew Luck Throws Football At Colts Minicamp Practice

At Tuesday’s minicamp practice, Andrew Luck threw a football in front of the media for the first time in 2018. What else was learned after watching and hearing from Luck on Tuesday?

Zach Bolinger | Getty Images

INDIANAPOLIS – They could be described as tosses, and they were not with a normal NFL-sized football.

Nonetheless, Andrew Luck did something on Tuesday that he hadn’t done in nearly 8 months.

He threw a football in an Indianapolis Colts’ practice.

The ball was slightly lighter than a normal NFL football, and the tosses traveled mostly in the 5-to-10 yard area, with one final throw going about 20 yards.

But it was another positive step in the direction for Luck.

Following Tuesday’s minicamp practice, in which Luck ‘threw it’ around 20 times before heading indoors for continued shoulder rehab, No. 12 spoke to the media.

The major consensus from Luck was his persistent upbeat nature, matching his impressive physique, in projecting forward in 2018.

“My dips after training are much less,” Luck said when comparing how he feels right now to his 2017-self. “My dips after throwing – throwing is a challenging movement, lifting is a challenging movement, training – my dips after training are much less. My body doesn’t revolt, in a sense, to new things. The new things I do ask of it are so incremental and planned out very, very well so it allows myself to adapt to it. I trust myself. I push myself. We go might not see it, but I go hard. I feel like I improve and I don’t dip as much and (it’s not like) ‘Oh my gosh, I can’t move arm for the rest of the day.’ It’s ‘Alright, when are we going next? Let’s recover. Let’s move.’ And that’s different.

“I feel way more sort of in tuned with my body. That allows the people that are helping me to help me better. And so I think that makes everything better.”

Luck’s work on Tuesday will be replicated at Wednesday’s practice, at a slightly higher scale, before he rests on Thursday, which is all part of the Colts’ grand plan in making sure their franchise quarterback is ready for Week 1 this season.

While Luck still hasn’t thrown ‘The Duke’ (a normal NFL-sized football) in an actual workout, he did sneak in one quick session with Frank Reich a few weeks back.

On a quiet day at the Colts Complex, Luck called up his head coach for a workout.

(Luck) did his normal routine and the only thing that was different at the end was there was a ball there and he said, ‘What do you think? Let’s pick this up and throw this around a little bit,’ Reich recounts of the story with Luck.

“That was it. It really wasn’t a workout. We were just playing catch. Just playing toss back and forth.”

“And it felt great,” Luck said of his brief re-introduction to an NFL football. “Honestly, there was a little mental block and I had to do it.”

After the session, Luck made Reich promise not to tell about their secret pitch and catch.

That secret is now out after Luck returned to Tuesday’s practice in doing something he hadn’t done in front of the media this year.

Luck’s complete return into practice (and throwing a real football) won’t come until Training Camp.

The reason for Luck throwing lighter footballs right now is it puts less stress on his shoulder. It’s part of this lengthy rehab process, one that has Luck yet to take part in a team practice session since December 2016.

Trying to relate how throwing now to last year, Luck referenced the ‘pain’ he felt last October, which led to him going on injured reserve, something he’s definitely not feeling at the same level right now.

Luck said after Tuesday’s minicamp practice that his arm continues to feel better and better

“My arm feels normal,” No. 12 said.

Back when Luck and Reich tossed the ball a few weeks ago, that’s when the head coach truly started to believe that he would have his starting QB ready for 2018.

“Really, it’s just been in the last couple of weeks that my confidence level has started to really rise, just getting the see the process every day and seeing the cumulative effect of all the workouts and the progression of the workouts,” Reich says.

“That’s what’s given me confidence.”

Now, we have some visuals from Luck, albeit not the same as throwing on a Sunday afternoon in the fall, to go with Reich’s words.

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