Robert Mathis Taken Off PUP List, Returns to Practice


According to the Indianapolis Colts official website, outside linebacker Robert Mathis has been taken off the physically unable to perform list. This move will allow him to practice with the team for the first time since August of 2014. The team just took to the practice field, and Mathis joined them in full pads and helmet.

Mathis was placed on the PUP prior to training camp as he recovered from a torn achilles that he suffered while serving a four game suspension last year for performance enhancing drugs. The Colts lost him for 2014 and the defense suffered without his presence on the field.

The move also prevents Mathis from being put on the regular season PUP list, which requires players to sit for the first six weeks. This likely means that the Colts believe that Mathis will be in game shape well before Week 6, but as of now we still don’t have a timetable for his return.

While Mathis himself has said that he’ll be ready to go by Week 1 (Sept. 13 at Buffalo), team owner Jim Irsay and GM Ryan Grigson have done their best to temper expectations. Earlier in the year, Irsay said he might not return until November but that was seen as a worst case scenario.

Mathis spent most of training camp on a side field working with a trainer as he worked back into football shape. During 11-on-11 work, he stalked the sidelines itching to get back on the field.

While this is clearly a step in the right direction for Mathis, it could still be some time before we see him in an actual game. There is no reason to rush him back for a preseason game and the team took steps in free agency to add insurance in case Mathis’ return takes longer (or he is re-injured). He will likely be limited in practice and slowly eased back into the lineup, much like they did with Vick Ballard.

The Colts will have media availability following practice and Mathis’ return is sure to be the primary topic of discussion with coach Chuck Pagano. We’ll keep you updated on this story as it progresses.