clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

The season’s outcome for the Colts hinges on the battle of the backups.

The Colts will face a string of backup quarterbacks on their quest for the postseason.

Indianapolis Colts v Tennessee Titans Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

We’ve all heard of the battle of the bands. Well, the Indianapolis Colts have their own battle over the next four weeks; the battle of the backups. This phenomenon has been raging across the NFL this season with starting quarterback after starting quarterback finding themselves injured and being replaced in the starting lineup by their backups. The Colts have been dealing with this issue for almost the entire season and have managed it extremely well to this point. It isn’t an easy thing to do, however. Replacing your franchise quarterback, who in most cases is the highest paid player on your roster, isn’t accomplished with success in all cases.

Look across the league for the year of the backup quarterback. The Vikings, Cardinals, Jets, Patriots, and Giants have all dealt with a substantial amount of time with the game’s most important position on the mend. That is bad enough on its own, but now add the Colts and their post-bye teams into the mix.

The Titans had their own backup quarterback move into the starting role midstream due to injury. The Colts won that battle of the backup and now move on to as series of four straight against quarterbacks who did not start the season. The Bengals’ season looked lost as Jake Browning was trust into action, but he performed above expectations against the Jaguars in a game that has put Cincinnati back into the playoff conversation. With skilled players throughout the roster, the Colts will have their hands full on Sunday.

Fast forward to a Saturday afternoon showdown with the Steelers. This team has owned the Colts over the years, but fortunately, it may get a little easier with Mitchell Trubisky at quarterback. As the boos littered the field on Thursday night in Pittsburgh, Trubisky doesn’t appear to be a major threat. Follow that up with games against the Falcons and Raiders to find two more quarterback situations in flux. Both teams have replaced their struggling starters in preference of the backups.

The only original starter that remains on the schedule for the Colts is C.J. Stroud. In a year in which so many starters are going down, even Stroud isn’t a guarantee weeks away. Yes, it will be an epic battle of the backups. It won’t necessarily be easy as the Colts trout out their own backup. The benefit for the Colts, however, is that their backup is pretty solid, and he has been the starter for the majority of the year. Anything could happen over the final month-plus of the year. Whatever happens, the theme is clear. Win the battle of the backups, and the Colts will find themselves in the playoffs.