This week the Indianapolis Colts arrived in Anderson, IN to began 2014 Training Camp. Camp signifies the start of the pre-season, a time both fans and players look forward to each year. For Colts fans, camp is an enjoyable experience in which they watch their favorite sport for the first time in months. For the players, camp holds much more meaning. Unfortunately for running back Vick Ballard, training camp became very serious on Friday.
Only two days into practice, Ballard was injured during non-contact drills Friday afternoon. After being checked out by the training staff, the twenty four year old running back was carted off the field. Early reports indicate a possible season-ending injury to his achilles tendon.
Ballard was sidelined after only one game last season. In his second season with the Colts, the young running back suffered a torn ACL during practice. His 2013 injury also occurred during non-contact drills.
There is much to be said about a player who gives it his all day in and day out, whether in a game or on the practice field. There is a fine line between working hard and overworking, however. If Ballard is indeed sidelined for another season, he may start to be seen as an injury-prone liability rather than a strong asset to the team.
There is no doubt Ballard has contributed to the Colts recent success. In his first season in Indianapolis, the young running back played in all 16 games, ran 211 times for 814 yards and 2 touchdowns. Even in his first year, he showed real potential to bring the Colts running game up to speed with its passing offense.
The reality is that it is still uncertain whether or not Ballard will be finished before the season even starts. For his sake and the Colts, lets hope this scare is just that and he will be back after a little rest and relaxation. If it goes the other way, the Colts will have to determine whether Ballard is worth holding onto for another season or finding talent elsewhere.
Colts Owner and CEO, Jim Irsay, shared his thoughts on Ballard's injury. "When you see someone like Vick Ballard go down, who's worked so hard to get back, it's tough," Irsay said.
Ballard will undergo an MRI to determine the extent of the injury either Friday evening or Saturday morning.
Irsay commented on the future of Ballard,"We just have to do an MRI and see exactly what it is and go from there. You really hope to not hear that kind of news."
More to come as this story develops. Please stay tuned.