In an article posted today for the Indianapolis Star, Colts beat writer Mike Chappell discussed the team's back-up quarterback situation. When he asked team president Bill Polian to assess the situation, the response he got was:
"The backup quarterback is Curtis Painter. The question is: Do we carry a third, and if we do, who is it?"
For much of last season, Painter was the team's back-up. Longtime reserve quarterback Jim Sorgi was placed on IR in early December with a shoulder injury. During the off-season this year, the Colts opted to let Sorgi walk. He went on to sign with the NY Giants, where Peyton Manning's brother (Eli Manning) is the unquestioned starter at QB.
The decision to let Sorgi test the free agent waters was not one that drew much criticism. Since getting drafted in 2005 by the Colts, Sorgi never displayed the talent or desire to develop into starting-caliber player in the NFL, but was seemingly rather content collecting a six-figure salary while holding a clipboard on Sundays.
But was there more to Sorgi's departure than we thought? Check out this little segment from Chappell's article [emphasis mine]:
Since 2004, Colts management has declined to look for veteran help, instead relying on Jim Sorgi.
"If you have a young player that you feel has a future, that's always better than a veteran player who's proven that he can't do the job, which is why he's (available) in the first place," Polian said.
Sorgi, a 2004 sixth-round draft pick, was Manning's backup until a shoulder injury sidelined him midway through last season. He was released after the season, and landed with the New York Giants. Sorgi's injury resulted in a promotion for Painter, an 2009 sixth-round pick from Purdue.
"We like what Curtis has done and we're committed to him," Polian said.
Now, it's early and it's hot outside. I haven't had my morning coffee and I'm a bit bleary-eyed because of some insomnia last night. But that comment from Polian kind of appears like he's dissing ole Sorgi. Was Sorgi let go because Polian felt he just couldn't get the job done anymore?
For me, even though Sorgi seemed to have a strong football IQ, his physical limitations (arm strength) often prevented him from being more effective.
Or, was Polian's comment more general in nature, suggesting that Sorgi was, at one time, the "young player that you feel has a future" as opposed to some random veteran. If that's the case, I guess Sorgi doesn't have much of a future anymore in Polian's eyes. I mean, if the Colts thought Sorgi offered something more than Painter, they would have kept him.
It will be interesting to see if Sorgi says anything to this season to suggest that there was a falling out between him and management. I doubt there was, but Polian's comment kind of suggests that the Colts felt Sorgi's worth as a quarterback had diminished.