Colts quarterback Carson Wentz has put the Colts behind the 8-ball not even a week into training camp, landing on the shelf for 5-to-12 weeks with a foot injury. That’s a big window that could lead to big problems.
The injury is bad news for Wentz and the Colts, who traded some big draft capital to bring the beleaguered starter to the heartland this past offseason. Wentz is looking to rekindle his career after a difficult few years in Philadelphia, reuniting with former Philly QB coach Frank Reich in Indy.
Now, the Colts and general manager Chris Ballard are, once again, trying to find a patch for the QB position entering the regular season, and it’s dicy: the recently signed Brett Hundley is the only player on the depth chart with NFL snaps.
Here’s how the Colts’ current QB situation stands:
Colts QB depth chart
Moving forward into training camp, the Colts QB depth chart is lacking a proven starting presence with Wentz out for a few months’ time as he recovers from foot surgery. Here’s how it currently shakes out:
1. Jacob Eason
Eason was selected out of Washington in the fourth round of the 2020 NFL Draft, but still hasn’t gotten to take a bite out of the NFL apple.
Eason had a redshirt season behind Philip Rivers in 2020, but was never really considered starting material heading into the 2021 season with the Colts opting to trade for Wentz instead of giving him the keys to the offense.
Eason started his college career as a promising passer for the Georgia Bulldogs before transferring from Bulldogs to the Huskies following a knee injury — and then losing his job to Jake Fromm. The former five-star recruit finished his college career strong, and could get his shot this year with Wentz out.
There’s more than a decent chance that Eason finally gets his first NFL action, unless the Colts make a move for veteran backup. Those don’t exactly grow on trees. (But hey, Nick Foles might be available.)
Reich says the Colts are confident in the QB room we have. Told Jacob Eason, “It’s your show.”
— Jim Ayello (@jimayello) August 2, 2021
2. Brett Hundley
Hundley, the journeyman backup QB, was signed by the Colts following the initial news of Wentz’s injury last week.
Hundley has had limited NFL snaps (nine touchdowns to 13 interceptions in 18 games/nine starts) and needs to get up to speed with the Colts offense before taking the brunt of the starter reps in camp. That said, he’s still the only passer currently rostered by the Colts with actual NFL snaps.
As it currently stands, Hundley is only behind Eason on the depth chart, currently QB2 with Wentz out. There is, though, a reason that Ballard and Co. brought in Hundley, and the next few weeks will show a bit more if Hundley is their plan to start.
3. Sam Ehlinger
Ehlinger, the rookie, has a long, long ladder to climb up if he wants to sniff the field for Indy, and with a guy with NFL experience before him on the depth chart, don’t expect him to start unless something goes very wrong for the Colts (or very, very right for Ehlinger).
While the Texas passer was, at times, exciting in college, and he piled up 43 starts in four years, he’s going to need a lot of seasoning in camp and practice if he’s going to want to reach QB1 in Colts training camp. Don’t count on it.
4. Jalen Morton
Morton, a second-year UDFA, is currently a camp body, but has been solid for the Colts to this point in camp.
Playing his college ball at Prairie View A&M, Morton has a strong arm, but lacks the NFL processing that would get him a starting gig. A long shot, but a camp body and likely practice-squad QB when it’s all said and done.