Indianapolis Colts running back Jonathan Taylor left the team’s training camp complex for the second time in a week, team officials confirmed in a statement.
The announcement came shortly before Indy and the Chicago Bears held the first of two joint practices at Grand Park in Westfield, Indiana, about a 30-minute drive from team headquarters on the city’s west side.
The 2021 NFL rushing champion has been on the physically unable to perform list since reporting to camp July 25. He had offseason ankle surgery.
“Jonathan Taylor returned to Indianapolis to continue his rehab, however he had a personal matter arise,” the team said. “He is not currently with the team and his absence is excused.”
Taylor left the facility last week to continue rehabbing after the injury forced him to miss six games last season. The former Wisconsin Badgers star also has been embroiled in an ugly contract dispute as he enters the final season of his rookie contract. Taylor is scheduled to make about $4.3 million this year.
Taylor has been one of several prominent running backs leaguewide to publicly complain about how backs are valued given the franchise tag currently sits at $10.1 million — the lowest of any position other than kickers and punters.
Colts owner Jim Irsay and Taylor met for about an hour in Irsay’s motorhome during the first night practice at camp.
Afterward, Irsay said he remained hopeful Taylor would play and play well this season. Then word leaked that Taylor had requested a trade.
The New Jersey prep star produced two 2,000-yard seasons for the Badgers and nearly did it again during his second season with the Colts when he finished with a league-best 1,811 yards. His 20 total TDs that season also tied for the most in the league.
But after totaling 2,980 yards and 29 TD runs in his first two NFL seasons, Taylor missed six games because of the ankle and wound up with 861 yards, four TDs and an average of 4.5 yards per carry — all career lows.
Reporting by The Associated Press.
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