After team owner Jim Irsay has publicly proclaimed that ‘all chips would be in’ in 2022, it’s time the Indianapolis Colts went all in for an elite quarterback, even if such player is on the ‘back 9’ or even closer to cracking open a cold one at the clubhouse as the sun majestically sets.
In an offseason, where both the Green Bay Packers Aaron Rodgers and Seattle Seahawks Russell Wilson have been mentioned as potentially being on the move, the Colts need to aggressively go all in—if either is realistically ever available.
When looking at three recently successful franchises, each of them made ‘power moves’—bringing in elite-level talents at starting quarterback: the Denver Broncos when signing Peyton Manning in 2012, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers when signing Tom Brady in 2020, and the Los Angeles Rams recently trading for Matthew Stafford during the 2021 offseason.
Two of those three franchises now have Super Bowl hardware to show for it—and the Los Angeles Rams, playing in this weekend’s NFC’s title game, may not be too far off from their own.
Never underestimate the gravitas of an elite quarterback, one who can mask a lot of a team’s underlying deficiencies.
The fact that the Colts already invested (and lost) a 2022 first round pick trading for incumbent and enigmatic starting quarterback Carson Wentz is inconsequential.
It’s a sunk cost.
It’s already gone.
There’s no sense crying over spilled milk.
Once upon a time, the Broncos had also invested a first round pick in a former NFL quarterback you may have heard of, Tim Tebow, one who even helped them even win a thrilling playoff game in 2011.
However, the Broncos also realized Tebow’s limitations as a passer, and that he wasn’t the guy to carry them to the promised land and hoist a Lombardi Trophy, a decision that was made even easier when then 4x NFL MVP Peyton Manning became an unexpected free agent.
The rest is history.
Manning would win another NFL MVP and help the Broncos appear in two Super Bowl games, winning one.
Well, now there’s another (at least) 3x NFL MVP that could hit the market, his name is Aaron Rodgers, and if you’re the Colts, I’m not sure how you can sit idly by, this time around.
This is still predominantly a passing league where an NFL team, the majority of the time, can only go as far as its starting quarterback can realistically take it—with the help of a strong supporting cast certainly aiding any championship cause.
The Colts have a lot of the pieces.
An NFL MVP caliber running back.
A reigning 1,000 yard wide receiver.
An offensive line that has the talent to be among the best in the league.
An improving defense that finished 10th overall in weighted DVOA.
And special teams units that were just ranked the 2nd best in the entire league.
But there’s still work to be done, as finding another impact pass rusher, a long-term answer at starting left tackle, another playmaking receiver, and of course, chief among them, what to do at starting quarterback.
If former franchise punting great Pat McAfee can put on his best recruiting pitch to Rodgers—who’s a regular on ‘The Pat McAfee Show’, and Irsay and the Colts put on the full court press this early offseason in trade negotiations, maybe the Colts potentially have something there.
The Broncos are already gearing up for the imminent Rodgers sweepstakes by signing former Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator, Nathaniel Hackett, as their new head coach—again trying to land a legendary Hall of Fame quarterback near the twilight of his playing career for one last Super Bowl ride.
What are the Colts going to do? Patiently wait?
It’s time to enter the fray.
It may be time to go big game hunting.