According to NBC Sports Peter King on ‘The Dan Patrick Show’, the Indianapolis Colts checked in on former franchise quarterback Andrew Luck’s retirement before trading for newly acquired ex-Philadelphia Eagles cornerstone Carson Wentz earlier this offseason (via ‘The Dan Patrick Show’s’ Andrew Perloff):
"The Colts talked to him before they made the Carson Wentz trade. .... Nothing has come out about what exactly was said. But he had to leave them with this impression that I'm not playing football." - Peter King talked about Andrew Luck on @dpshow— Andrew Perloff (@andrewperloff) April 21, 2021
Now, too much shouldn’t be read into this.
The Colts merely had to perform their due diligence and ‘make the call’ before pursuing other potential starting quarterback options this offseason.
Not doing so would’ve been silly.
The Colts presumably called Luck, as well as probably other NFL teams, who could potentially move a top quarterback such as the Houston Texans with Deshaun Watson (before the ongoing legal allegations surfaced publicly) and the Seattle Seahawks with Russell Wilson—seemingly leaving no stone unturned among options in the process.
It’s already been reported the Colts checked in on Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Derek Carr’s trade availability before the Carson Wentz trade too. Not to mention, the team was previously interested in new Los Angeles Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford as well.
It’s not that the Colts don’t have confidence in the newly acquired Wentz, it’s just that the franchise still holds Luck’s contract rights, he’s the superior option (if he could shake off the rust and get fully healthy again), and Indianapolis wouldn’t have had to surrender any draft capital for him to return to the team.
Alas, Andrew Luck is still firmly retired though—and it’s looking like it’s a 99.9% certainty he always will be.
For what it’s worth, Colts general manager Chris Ballard shut down the earlier offseason speculation and rumors that Luck could come out of retirement:
Ballard on Andrew Luck’s “meeting” with Jim Irsay yesterday:— Kevin Bowen (@KBowen1070) February 5, 2021
“There was no meeting…Andrew is retired.”
It’s time to move on.
The Colts will turn their attention to Wentz behind center, and by being reunited with head coach Frank Reich and surrounded by a strong supporting cast, he should be placed in a position to succeed in Indianapolis (assuming the Colts can shore up starting left tackle).
The hope is that he’ll be their next franchise quarterback.
While it’s unfair to compare Wentz too much to Luck (as Wentz just needs to be his best ‘self), they are similar in playing style in some regards by their ability to extend plays outside the pocket and improvise when the passing pocket breaks down—possessing dual threat ability on the field.
However, Luck is safely retired, and it’s time to focus on Wentz for the foreseeable future.