NFL Trade Rumors: Indianapolis Colts looking for a starting QB next season?

Indianapolis Colts QB Philip Rivers
Indianapolis Colts QB Philip Rivers
Amaar Burton
Modified 13 Nov 2020

The Indianapolis Colts don't need a quarterback right now.

The Colts, who go into Thursday night's game with the AFC South-leading Tennessee Titans at 5-3 and very much in the playoff picture, actually have a borderline future Hall of Famer lining up at the position right now. Paired with the NFL's top-ranked defense in terms of total yards allowed, QB Philip Rivers has the Indianapolis Colts in a good spot currently.

But there is the future to consider. Rivers is 38 years old and he joined the Indianapolis Colts this season on a one-year contract after spending 16 years with the Los Angeles Chargers.

After this season, Rivers might want to retire. He might want to play somewhere else. Or the Indianapolis Colts might just want to move on and not tie their hopes to a QB who's knocking on 40 years old.

Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer wrote about the Indianapolis Colts' options at QB next season and brought up two names that could be trade possibilities: Sam Darnold of the New York Jets and Jimmy Garoppolo of the San Francisco 49ers.

NFL Trade Rumors: Darnold or Garoppolo headed to the Indianapolis Colts?

Darnold and Jimmy G have been the subjects of a lot of trade rumors before and after the league's Nov. 3 trade deadline.

Darnold was supposed to be the Jets' franchise QB, taken with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, but he hasn't panned out and the Jets are terrible. They're bad enough to be in pole position for the No. 1 pick in the 2021 draft, and if they get that spot, they're most likely going to take Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence. In that case, Darnold becomes expendable. Darnold has some talent and he's young (23), he just doesn't have much help with the Jets. With the Colts, he'd be helped by a very good defense and some playmakers at running back and receiver.

Garoppolo is technically the 49ers' franchise QB -- at least that's how he was billed when he came over from the New England Patriots after an apprenticeship as Tom Brady's backup -- but at this point he's become seen as more of a game manager. Garoppolo has been injury-prone (he's sidelined right now with a high ankle sprain), and the San Francisco defense and run game gets more credit for leading the team to the Super Bowl last season.

With the Colts, Garoppolo might only need to be a game manager with that defense and the offensive talent around him.

In the event the Indianapolis Colts want to bring back Rivers and he wants to stay, they won't need an immediate-impact QB and could instead find their eventual replacement in the draft.

The Indianapolis Colts will likely be picking somewhere in the mid- to late-first round, putting them in range for some high-quality quarterbacks like Florida's Kyle Trask or Alabama's Mac Jones.

Published 13 Nov 2020
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