Colts GM Chris Ballard spoke to the media on Tuesday about their current starting quarterback, and he wasn't exactly effusive.
Colts GM Chris Ballard on Carson Wentz’s future with Indy: “I don’t have the direct answer for you. We’re working through it…Ultimately we’ll do what’s best for the Colts.”
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) March 1, 2022
The Colts traded for Wentz last offseason, and it seems bonkers that it's come to this in just a year. But that's the Carson Wentz experience. The Colts got a full dose in the last game of the 2021 season, when a poor performance from Wentz cost the team a trip to the playoffs.
With that in mind, the Colts' position on Wentz makes a lot more sense. After a season in which Wentz struggled and made some egregious, blooper-reel throwing decisions, they truly don't know if he's their quarterback of the future.
Colts GM Chris Ballard on whether the Colts believe in Carson Wentz as the long-term answer at QB: “Not saying we don’t, but … we’re not there (having completed their evaluation of him) yet. I’m not there yet.”
— Nick Shook (@TheNickShook) March 1, 2022
There is some hope, though. Ballard said he met with Wentz for an hour on Tuesday, and it appears it was an honest conversation about some of Wentz's flaws.
Chris Ballard says he met with Carson Wentz for an hour in his office today. “It was real good.” Also talked about criticism of Wentz: “Most of it’s pretty fair. It’ll be interesting to see how he grows from this. I think he will. https://t.co/XurUOjTiwI
— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) March 1, 2022
Head coach Frank Reich believes that Wentz can grow and be successful — though he does admit that Wentz could be doing it somewhere else.
"I believe in Carson. I stuck my neck out for him ... I believe he's gonna have a lot of success playing quarterback, whether that's here or somewhere else." -- Frank Reich. pic.twitter.com/BCGopbgIMx
— Mike Tanier (@MikeTanier) March 1, 2022
Wentz's future in Indy is reportedly 'bleak'
Ballard's comments weren't exactly positive, but they're certainly better than what we heard a few weeks ago. In mid-February, ESPN's Chris Mortensen reported that Wentz's future in Indy looks "bleak," and that he'd "probably" be traded or released in the next month.
There's a belief that #Colts QB Carson Wentz will "'probably" be traded or released before March 19th, per @mortreport. That's when $15M in base salary becomes guaranteed. His future in Indianapolis looks "bleak."
— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) February 13, 2022
If the Colts really are thinking about moving on from Wentz, they don't have a lot of time to figure it out. They have just over two weeks to make the decision before Wentz's $15 million salary kicks in, and it's a tough decision. Because it's not just about moving on from Wentz, it's about finding a quarterback that can at least produce at Wentz's level and stop the team from sliding backwards. And as frustrating as Wentz is, QBs like that don't grow on trees.