This past offseason, the Indianapolis Colts signed free agent Gardner Minshew to a one-year, $3.5 million deal. The veteran quarterback has played well this year, making his signing look like a wise decision so far.
Gardner Minshew Pickup was the Right Call for the Indianapolis Colts
Gardner Minshew’s NFL Career to Date
Minshew was selected by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the sixth round (178th overall pick) of the 2019 NFL Draft. He wound up starting 12 games his rookie year, passing for 3,271 yards, 21 touchdowns, and six interceptions while posting a 6-6 record.
The following season, Minshew started eight games for the Jaguars. He recorded 2,259 passing yards, 16 touchdown passes, and five interceptions, but only led the team to one victory.
Minshew was traded to the Philadelphia Eagles in 2021 for a conditional sixth-round draft pick. He would play two seasons in Philly, backing up star quarterback, Jalen Hurts.
Starting in place of the injured Hurts, Minshew came up with an outstanding performance against the Dallas Cowboys last season. He threw for 355 yards and a pair of touchdowns although Philadelphia lost the contest, 40-34.
“Minshew Mania” in Indianapolis
Andrew Luck retired out of the blue right before the 2019 regular season. After he left, the Colts acquired veteran quarterbacks like Philip Rivers, Carson Wentz, and Matt Ryan over the years.
Finally, the team went young this year and selected Florida quarterback Anthony Richardson with the fourth-overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. Richardson won the starting job while Minshew was named his backup.
Richardson rushed for two touchdowns during the first quarter of the Week 2 matchup with the Houston Texans. He was the first Colt to produce two first-quarter touchdowns since Edgerrin James in 1999. Unfortunately, he was ruled out in the second quarter due to a concussion.
Minshew entered the game and led the Colts on three consecutive scoring drives. The Mississippi native completed 19 of his 23 passes for 174 yards and a touchdown, leading the club to its first win (31-20) of the young season.
No Need to Fear, Minshew is Here
It’s unclear whether Richardson will be good to go for Sunday’s contest against the Baltimore Ravens. The young quarterback must clear the NFL’s concussion protocol in order to return to the field.
While the Colts are hoping Richardson returns, there is no need to press the panic button if he doesn’t. The team will be just fine with the cool, calm, and collected Minshew under center.
Minshew isn’t a franchise quarterback like Richardson is. Yet, he just might be the best backup signal-caller in the entire NFL. He can lead the way and continuously throw catchable passes to receivers like Michael Pittman Jr., Alec Pierce, and rookie, Josh Downs.
Minshew is clearly comfortable playing in new head coach Shane Steichen’s offense. He played with the Eagles the previous two seasons under Steichen, who served as the team’s offensive coordinator. With that said, Minshew doesn’t have to learn a new system, which makes life easier for him.
Whether he’s starting or sitting on the bench, Minshew is a great addition to the club.+ He’s an experienced quarterback, who provides the Colts with a mentor for Richardson. Plus, he has the ability to take over and win games if need be.
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