June 19, 2024

The Indianapolis Colts executed a shrewd move last offseason by acquiring Gardner Minshew from the Eagles to serve as a backup for their rookie quarterback. This decision, deemed low-risk on a one-year deal, was particularly sensible as Minshew had prior experience with the team’s new head coach. His understanding of the system and potential mentorship to Anthony Richardson appeared to be a promising combination. Little did both the organization and fans anticipate the crucial role he would play in preventing the season from becoming a complete disaster.

Beginning significant action as early as week two against Houston, Minshew swiftly demonstrated his importance to the team’s success. With the exception of week four against the Rams, where he did not see any action, Minshew remained highly involved as a backup, especially with Richardson facing various issues and being in and out of the lineup. The dynamics changed when Richardson sustained a season-ending injury against the Titans, leading Minshew to assume the permanent starting role.

While serving as the starter, it’s fair to acknowledge that Minshew, at times, found himself in challenging situations. He displayed moments of discomfort, such as getting restless in the pocket or overthrown passes to open receivers. However, these challenges were anticipated, considering he was never initially intended to be the primary starter. Just as one wouldn’t expect a substitute to match the performance of their superior at work, similar considerations apply to Minshew in his unexpected starting role.

Should the Colts consider re-signing Gardner Minshew as the starting quarterback? No, that seems unlikely, given that Anthony Richardson is viewed as the team’s future quarterback. Nevertheless, the Colts should make every effort to retain Minshew in his original role as a backup. His significant contributions during the current season proved his worth and justified his contract. Often, when a backup is thrust into a starting position due to injuries, teams struggle to maintain their momentum. Minshew’s leadership and ability to stabilize the team were indispensable to its success. Considering the uncertainties surrounding Richardson’s durability, having a reliable backup who can step in on a quarter-to-quarter or game-to-game basis is essential, and Minshew fits that role perfectly.

Given Minshew’s performance this year, he may attract more offers for his services compared to previous seasons, with some teams possibly offering him a chance to compete for a starting position. Losing him for such reasons would be challenging but understandable. However, if the Colts fail to do everything in their power to bring him back, it would be considered negligence. The hope is that they can secure Minshew on the roster for another season or two, as he has earned a place in the franchise’s future.

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NFL: Houston Texans at Indianapolis Colts

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