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Colts tackle in treatment for alcohol

Gill

– A day after defensive tackle John Gill was arrested on a charge of public intoxication, he was out of jail and on his way to a treatment facility Monday.

The chances of Gill’s playing this season for the Colts are slim, team president Bill Polian said from training camp, as the team tried to determine through the NFL office which non-playing roster spot would be most appropriate for Gill.

“With respect to John Gill, he’s got a problem, clearly, that unfortunately many Americans are familiar with, either in their family or in the workplace,” Polian said. “So the No. 1 priority for him is to get treatment, and we’re in that process right now. Football is not a priority. It’s not even a consideration.”

Gill, 23, was in his second NFL training camp out of Northwestern. The undrafted Gill appeared in two games last season, tallying five tackles against the New York Jets.

He was also active, but did not play, in the AFC Championship Game against the Jets.

About 4 a.m. Sunday, a day the Colts had off from practice, police found Gill passed out in a ditch on the side of an Indianapolis road. Barefoot and slurring his speech, Gill had trouble standing, according to police.

“He’s going into treatment as quickly as possible,” Polian said. “That’s being arranged with the appropriate people at the league level. … We hope that everything in the end will work out. But his focus now needs to be on treatment and getting himself squared away.”

Polian wouldn’t say whether this was the first instance in which Gill had demonstrated a problem with alcohol.

“The program is confidential and suffice to say, we were very hopeful this would be a good year for him,” Polian said, “but it hasn’t turned out that way. It’s important he got on with the business of getting his life straightened out.”

Colts coach Jim Caldwell said he didn’t know whether a replacement for Gill would be brought in soon. The team has seven other defensive tackles on the roster, led by Antonio Johnson, Daniel Muir and Fili Moala, as Indianapolis prepares for Sunday’s preseason opener against visiting San Francisco.

“(Gill) has had some difficulties and hopefully he’ll get the kind of help that he needs to get his life in order,” Caldwell said. “We certainly put the person first, and that’s the most important thing.”

Police dropped the charge against Gill.

Notes: Right tackle Ryan Diem returned to practice after missing two days for the birth of his first child, a daughter whose name he kept under wraps. … The players who missed practice included right tackle Charlie Johnson (right foot), center Jeff Saturday (undisclosed), tight end Dallas Clark (undisclosed) and offensive lineman Andy Alleman (back). … The Colts wore blue helmets for the first time in more than 50 years during Monday’s training camp session. They will wear throwback uniforms from the 1955 season for their preseason opener Sunday against San Francisco, so they used the morning session to start breaking the helmets in. The helmets feature one horseshoe on each side of the back and a white line down the center. Sunday’s game pants are white with a single blue line down the side, and the white jerseys have three blue stripes on the sleeves.

jcohn@jg.net

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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