Indianapolis Colts fans are expecting the return of Andrew Luck for a second straight offseason. That much is melted into our brains, and quite frankly, we’re all sick and tired of hearing about it.
What do we know right now? The same thing we knew in December; Luck looks great physically and he wholeheartedly believes that he’s going to be back in 2018, and better than ever.
The Colts made due with Jacoby Brissett, a young passer with some obvious potential, and general manager Chris Ballard stated that he felt the acquisition of Brissett last season was for long-term stability at the position rather than an assumption on Luck’s future. Brissett was thought to have some trade value this offseason, but some of that talk subsided as the 2017 season went on and the Colts only won four games.
However, through the course of the offseason apparently that interest was rekindled, and not surprisingly. In March it was even reported that the Colts received interest in a trade for Brissett from a couple teams, but weren’t willing to deal their backup.
Now, as the team has their quarterback room in order — enter Andrew Luck qualifier here — we’ve seen reports that the Colts have been meeting with some quarterback prospects nevertheless (at least seven to this point).
Florida International quarterback Alex McGough had an impressive throwing session, five NFL teams' quarterbacks coaches scheduling private workouts. Has met with Cardinals, Chargers, Falcons, Colts, Giants, Buccaneers and Saints— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) March 24, 2018
Some may chalk it up to due diligence, while conspiratorial minds go off the deep end assuming Luck’s career is done. In reality, it’s all part of the process. Ballard isn’t going to bypass any position in his preparation for the draft — and that’s that.
On the other hand, the Colts currently hold nine picks and it won’t surprise anyone if they make another move in order to add to that total. Should that happen, we can’t rule out the possibility that the Colts may, in fact, scoop up a quarterback at some point in the draft.
Draft news: Western Kentucky QB Mike White spent yesterday visiting with the #Colts, and he’s also had plenty of workouts (the #Patriots sent Nick Caserio, for instance). … Meanwhile, #LSU’s Arden Key is working out for the #49ers today, then he flies to the #Raiders tomorrow.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 11, 2018
Through all of this ‘leaving no stone unturned’, Western Kentucky’s Mike White actually adds real interest to the draft speculation. White has a lot to work with, and is somewhere in the mid-to-late Day 2, early Day 3 conversation as a projection.
First of all, I’m biased. I think White could be very good, and has the potential to be a good starter in the NFL. But, regardless of who Ballard may consider drafting, it wouldn’t be the worst approach if they feel the same about their guy. Not for Luck’s situation in particular, rather to keep all options available for the future.
What happens as the trade deadline nears and some organization sours on their starter, or injuries happen even earlier in the season? Some team is going to be in need of a spot starter with some long-term potential and could be willing to hand over a nice deal for Brissett’s services.
Just as it is with the Colts, Brissett’s being under contract through the 2019 season is more enticing as a possible acquisition. Additionally, if a prospect like White — or whoever Ballard likes — shows similar potential to that of Brissett and feels comfortable with him taking over the backup role, Brissett becomes a bargaining chip towards assisting in the Colts rebuild.
Maybe a mid-round pick or higher in return for a capable starter with a relatively high ceiling? The Colts still hold a backup for their franchise passer, and a draft asset in the process.
However, none of that could happen. The results will indeed dictate what Ballard decides, per usual. He’s not going to ‘flinch’ as he’s previously put it. Ballard may be just fine riding Brissett as the backup and is only looking at quarterbacks because it’s his job to be thoroughly prepared.
We don’t know whether the Colts legitimately fancy a quarterback from this class or not, but we do know that Ballard is going to be ready for any situation that may arise.