The guy who out-performed current Colts back-up quarterback Curtis Painter in pre-season is out of work. Second year quarterback Tom Brandstater was cut from the practice squad yesterday (tip to reddogfred). While it's certainly possible Brandstater could return to the Colts either on the PS or the active roster, it's a little distressing that the only person at the Colts facilities to play quarterback besides Peyton Manning is (gulp!) Curtis Painter.
During pre-season, Brandstater clearly outplayed and out-performed Painter by throwing for 212 yards, 4 TDs, and 1 INT. Yet, despite displaying better overall ability and judgment to play the quarterback position, Brandstater was cut and signed to the practice squad in early September while Painter retained his job Peyton Manning's clipboard holder and personal Gatorade boy.
The Colts gave no reason for the odd move, other than to say that they 'never felt bad' about Curtis Painter as the back-up. Just oozes of confidence in the guy, doesn't it?
I guess when you factor in that Peyton Manning has never missed a start in his thirteen year career, the need for a strong back-up quarterback on this roster is not great. However, one of the things the Colts like to sell to players and fans is this notion that, if you play and practice well, you will have an opportunity to win a roster spot. When you take one look at the Brandstater v. Painter 'competition' this past pre-season, what the Colts are selling is, quite simply, not true. Maybe it was at one point, but not under Jim Caldwell's regime.
Brandstater is a good kid and shows some ability to play in this league. While known scrubs like Trent Edwards are able to find homes on NFL rosters, one would have to assume a solid prospect like Brandstater could land somewhere.
One thing I do know is that when the Colts complain that they cannot find a quality back-up QB because 'no one wants to play behind Peyton,' please note that such excuses are a load of bull. Tom Brandstater was a quality back-up for this team; or, at the very least, of higher quality than Curtis Painter.