Colts’ notebook: Reece Fountain recovering following ankle surgery

Reece Fountain in the preseason game vs. Buffalo

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Reece Fountain’s comeback from a devastating ankle injury is underway.

The Indianapolis Colts’ second-year wideout underwent surgery on Friday to repair a dislocation and fracture to his left ankle, according to Frank Reich. He suffered the injury in Thursday’s final training camp practice.

The surgery, Reich said Sunday, “went very well. We’ll give him all the support we can and he needs. We expect a full and complete recovery.’’

At some point, the Colts will place Fountain, their 2018 fifth-round draft pick, on the injured reserve list.

“Yeah,’’ Reich said, “he’s ruled out (for the season).’’

Reich also touched on several other topics during his conference call a day after the Colts’ 21-18 loss to the Cleveland Browns. That included:

Andrew Luck

Luck went through individual pregame warm-ups Saturday at Lucas Oil Stadium, working on side-to-side motions as he rehabs a strained left calf muscle and an ankle issue. Reich had yet to talk with the team’s medical staff at the time of his early-afternoon chat with the media.

He insisted Luck’s return to practice “is up to him’’ and how he’s able to deal with the pain.

“The pain threshold thing is not something to be ignored,’’ Reich said. “The strengthening issue, we know he’s doing everything possible there. The workouts on the field have been good, both from getting work and fundamentals and techniques, but also strengthening it while you’re on the field.

“But there’s also the pain threshold thing to figure out the best way we can.’’

The Colts return to the practice field Tuesday.

The running game

Reich wants a top-5 running attack, but the early returns haven’t been encouraging. In two preseason games, the Colts are averaging 89 yards per game and 3.7 yards per attempt.

But that includes the quarterbacks. Running backs have 107 yards on 40 attempts. That’s just 2.7 yards per rush.

Reich described the run game as “subpar,’’ adding “it’s been one little thing here, it’s one little mistake there or one little detail there or a miscommunication by one person.

“Of course those things are unacceptable.’’

Inconsistent personnel groupings have contributed. Left tackle Anthony Castonzo, center Ryan Kelly and running back Marlon Mack were among seven starters who missed the Buffalo game. Saturday against the Browns, left guard Quenton Nelson was out with an ankle injury and Pro Bowl wideout T.Y. Hilton was held out of the game.

Return game

To this point, the punt return duties belong to Chester Rogers. End of discussion.

“Chester’s our No. 1 returner right now, and we feel good about Chester being back there,’’ Reich said. “You can do the math. Chester’s earned that spot. That’s a very important role.’’

The Colts undoubtedly face difficult numbers decisions when rosters are cut to 53 Aug. 31, and Reich made it clear special teams will play an integral part in whether they carry an extra receiver, cornerback, safety, linebacker or player at another position.

“Every player knows if you’re going to be that fifth receiver, sixth receiver . . . you’ve got to be contributing on special teams,’’ he said.

You can follow Mike Chappell on Twitter at @mchappell51

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