The Indianapolis Colts are without a clear starting quarterback after Carson Wentz underwent surgery on his left foot earlier this month that may cause him to miss the start of the regular season. But that doesn’t mean that the team plans on rushing him back into action.
Colts owner Jim Irsay made that abundantly clear with comments on Thursday evening. He shared that he spoke with Wentz and told him that he wanted him to get back to full strength before trying to suit up for a regular season game.
“I told him, ‘I want you at 100 percent,'” Irsay told reporters. “We want to see him healthy in two months, in two years, four years.”
Irsay also revealed a key piece of information about the Colts plan moving forward, should Wentz’s recovery be on the longer side. He claimed that the coaching staff will lean toward playing Jacob Eason or Sam Ehlinger, rather than having the front office pursue another quarterback in a trade.
Colts owner Jim Irsay on QB Carson Wentz: “I told him, ‘I want you at 100 percent.’ We want to see him healthy in two months, in two years, four years.”
— Mike Wells (@MikeWellsNFL) August 12, 2021
In a chat this evening, Jim Irsay makes it clear: Colts don’t know when Carson Wentz will be ready, and he’s told the QB himself they won’t let him play until he’s back to 100%.
Team is leaning toward rolling with Eason/Ehlinger if Wentz isn’t ready. Trade seems very unlikely.
— Zak Keefer (@zkeefer) August 12, 2021
The Colts may not get to the point of playing one of the youngsters based on a report from earlier this week. According to ESPN’s Chris Mortensen, Wentz is on pace to open the season against the Seahawks as the starter under center. It does seem like the 2017 Pro Bowler is on the right track with his recovery, considering he was present at training camp earlier this week and was walking without a limp.
Regardles, the Colts will want to prepare through the preseason as if Wentz won’t be able to suit up on Sept. 12. That means the upcoming exhibition slate will be crucial for Eason and Ehlinger to get snaps at game speed, so that Indianapolis coaching staff can see what it has, if anything, in either one.
The Colts plan to have the 23-year-old and the 22-year-old see significant time in Sunday’s preseason opener against the Carolina Panthers. The game will mark a major moment for both players to show off their skills as they compete for the backup job, or maybe even to be the Week 1 starter.