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Andrew Luck throws footballs during Colts minicamp

INDIANAPOLIS -- Andrew Luck, who missed the entire 2017 season recovering from a shoulder injury, threw a football in practice Tuesday for the first time since he was shut down in October of last year. It is believed that Luck was throwing a slightly smaller football than the one used in the NFL.

Luck's appearance was a surprise and it was the first glimpse reporters got of Luck throwing since he was shut down after four days of practice last October, a setback that followed his Jan. 2017 shoulder surgery which ended his season before it began. Luck threw about 20 passes in individual drills, including one that went about 20 yards in the air to the left side. The throws looked more like soft tossing, lacking the zip Luck would normally have on them, but he threw several while rolling to his left and right, hallmarks of his game.

"My goal is to be ready for training camp," Luck told reporters Tuesday. "That doesn't necessarily mean throwing 100 balls every day, six days in a row. There's going to be a plan. Frank and I have really, really good conversations and we'll continue to have great conversations.

"But big picture, my goal was to be able to throw as much as I do in like a game week. Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, I practice, and then Sunday, let it loose, no count, nothing. You know, you've got to go and let it go. That's what I'm preparing for. That's why right now I throw Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays, to mimic a three-day practice week and then Friday as a Sunday game week."

Luck and the Colts have said for months that the goal is for Luck to be able to throw without restriction when the team convenes for training camp in late July, and nothing Luck showed in his brief appearance would seem to throw that timeline off. But his return to practice is still a significant development in his recovery, which has been largely shrouded in secrecy, with few details given about his workout regime and timeline.

It was known that Luck had thrown weighted balls, and coach Frank Reich said at March's Spring League Meeting that Luck had started throwing small-sized footballs.

Luck confirmed to reporters Tuesday that he threw a regulation-sized ball a few weeks ago.

"I've thrown a real football. The Duke. I've picked it up and I've thrown it and it felt great.

Follow Judy Battista on Twitter at @judybattista

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