Andrew Luck
GM refutes reports of shoulder concerns
Colts general manager Chris Ballard addressed Luck's rehab during a press conference Wednesday and downplayed speculation that the health of the quarterback's right shoulder played a role in Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels' decision to withdraw his acceptance of Indianapolis' head-coaching vacancy, Kevin Patra of reports. "Let's talk about Andrew because there's a lot of rumors," Ballard said. "I'm going to listen to the doctors that he's talking to and dealing with, and I'm going to listen to the guy that is training him right now. And, at this point, we feel very strongly that Andrew's in a good place. He doesn't need surgery -- I have not gotten that from the two doctors that he's seen after the season. His strength is good. He's working on his throw motion and he's working on his arm speed right now. He has not picked up a football, but he's throwing balls, working on arm speed. He's not going to skip a step...he's going to do everything right to get himself ready to play. And I'm very confident -- he's very confident -- that he's going to come back and prove a lot of people wrong."

After playing through an injury to his labrum during the 2015 and 2016 seasons, Luck underwent surgery last January with the hope he would enter the 2017 campaign at full strength. That never came to fruition, however, as Luck made limited progress in his recovery in the months that followed before being shuttered for good in November when his shoulder responded poorly to light throwing. Following his shutdown, Luck headed to Europe for additional treatment, with the Colts announcing shortly thereafter that a follow-up surgery wouldn't be necessary for the franchise signal caller. While Chris Mortensen of ESPN reported Sunday that doctors who have examined Luck still have concerns about his shoulder, Ballard's comments suggest that at least within the organization, there isn't as much worry regarding Luck's health outlook for 2018. Regardless, Luck will need to get back on the field and throw without discomfort at some point during the offseason before there can be any optimism that his lingering shoulder woes are firmly in the rear-view mirror.

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