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Now that the offseason is essentially over when it comes to significant roster moves, Sam Monson of Pro Football Focus doesn’t believe the team did enough for the incoming quarterback this offseason in order to get him on the right track after a bad 2020 campaign.
The Colts took a gamble when they traded for Carson Wentz as the successor to Philip Rivers, and while I understand why they did so, that move alone doesn’t mean they can forget about the offense. Quarterback will move the needle more than any other move, but they can’t simply switch off and rely on the Midas touch of Frank Reich to breathe new life into Wentz’s career.
The Colts owe it to Wentz to ensure he is the only variable involved in determining whether he can hang at the NFL level or if his decline was always inevitable after a hot start built on sand. Right now, they have neglected the two biggest issues that will impact his ability to rediscover his best play, and not only is that unfair to Wentz, but it’s undermining the all-in gamble they made on him in the first place.
The Colts are letting down Wentz as things stand, and the season is just a few months away, leaving few opportunities to right that wrong.
Monson cites the fact that the Colts didn’t make a major acquisition at left tackle or in the wide receiver room for reasons the team has already failed its quarterback. Throwing money at Trent Williams, making a blockbuster trade for Orlando Brown Jr. or drafting Christian Darrisaw over Kwity Paye would have been better options in Monson’s eyes.
The Colts were never going to give Williams the kind of contract he got with the 49ers. It wouldn’t have been financially feasible to have that much money invested in the offensive line. Brown is inexperienced at left tackle and even though he very well could succeed there, Chris Ballard won’t take that kind of chance.
Darrisaw was the player the Colts were going to draft before Paye fell into their lap. Given both the need and the value, going Paye over Darrisaw appears to be the right move based on career projection.
But they did sign Eric Fisher to a one-year deal after the draft, which could turn out to be a massive steal once he returns from his Achilles injury.
The Colts didn’t invest in pass catchers heavily this offseason, which isn’t that much of a surprise. They have some ascending talents in Michael Pittman Jr. and Parris Campbell (health willing) to go along with an elite offensive line and run game with Jonathan Taylor.
The pass-catchers will have to step up their game for Wentz, but the group is talented enough to do their part if the new quarterback makes strides in bouncing back.
It’s hard to truly know how this offseason will turn out for Wentz and the Colts until they step on the field but if Fisher returns relatively quickly and the young players develop as projected, this offseason will have been just fine.