As the Indianapolis Colts look to move forward with Jeff Saturday as the interim head coach, it was made clear that Sam Ehlinger will be the starting quarterback for now.
Lost in a press conference that gave off the vibes of an SNL skit was Saturday’s confirmation that the second-year Ehlinger will be the starting quarterback while rookie Bernhard Raimann will remain the starting left tackle.
“Sam will be the quarterback and Raimann will be still left tackle,” Saturday said.
Ehlinger now has two starts under his belt since he took over for Matt Ryan. While he showed some promise in his debut against the Washington Commanders, the disaster against the New England Patriots in Week 9 showed he has a long way to go.
In those two games, Ehlinger has completed 61.5% of his passes for 304 yards, zero touchdowns, one interception and a 69.7 passer rating. The interception wasn’t his fault as it bounced off the hands of a wide-open Kylen Granson.
He has shown some flashes. However, the Colts have turned into a circus given all of the distractions and changes this week. Even in a favorable matchup against the Las Vegas Raiders, it will be difficult for Ehlinger to find a groove with his development.
Raimann got the start in Week 9 as Dennis Kelly nursed calf and ankle injuries. The Colts allowed nine sacks and 12 quarterback hits, and according to Pro Football Focus, Raimann was credited with two of the sacks.
But it’s necessary for Raimann and Ehlinger to get these reps. Even if the former has a better chance of being the future starter at his position between the two, it’s best for them to get as much work in as possible in what is likely a lost season.
We still don’t know how the offense will change with Saturday’s arrival, but we will see the young tandem begin the new era in Week 10.