According to ESPN’s Dan Graziano, the Indianapolis Colts are the 25th most committed NFL team as it relates to their starting veteran quarterback Philip Rivers:
25. Indianapolis Colts
Starter: Philip Rivers | Signed through: 2020
Tier: Prove-it time | Ranking in tier: No. 1
Contract: One-year, $25 million contract signed in March 2020, fully guaranteed at signing.
Contracts don’t get much simpler than this one. The Colts signed Rivers to help them win this upcoming Super Bowl. There is no commitment beyond that for him or them.
Indianapolis also has Jacoby Brissett under contract for this year at $13 million, but he’s a free agent next offseason too. The Colts aren’t married to anyone. The only quarterback currently on their books for 2021 is rookie fourth-round pick Jacob Eason.
This low of a ranking is hardly surprising all things considered.
It doesn’t mean that the Colts don’t have a high degree of confidence in Rivers entering this season, but it’s more of an indication that he’s 38 years old and only signed a 1-year, $25 million deal earlier this offseason.
The 2020 season is essentially a 1-year, ‘prove it’ deal for Rivers.
If he performs well and wants to continue his playing career, the Colts will assuredly bring him back for at least one more final season in 2021.
The hope is that after a disappointing 2019 campaign that saw Rivers throw just 23 touchdowns to 20 interceptions, that he can regain his 2018 form with the Chargers where he threw for 32 touchdowns to 12 interceptions a year earlier.
By being reunited with head coach Frank Reich and passing behind a strong Colts offensive line with solid weapons—and with a power running game to heavily lean upon, there’s a realistic possibility that Rivers could return to his old Pro Bowl caliber self.
As noted, the only Colts quarterback under contract past 2020 is rookie 4th round pick Jacob Eason, who could use a year or two of seasoning—if he even proves capable of being the team’s potential franchise quarterback going forward.
The Colts aren’t tied up at starting quarterback by any means right now and could easily turn to free agency or the draft again in the immediate future if their current options don’t exactly pan out.
That being said, let’s hope that Rivers and the Colts make for a happy short-term ‘marriage’.