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Should the Indianapolis Colts Have Traded for Justin Fields?

Needing a backup for Anthony Richardson, the Indianapolis Colts didn’t trade for Justin Fields and signed veteran Joe Flacco.
Justin Fiekds

Earlier this offseason, the Chicago Bears traded Justin Fields to the Pittsburgh Steelers for only a conditional sixth-round pick. Should the Indianapolis Colts have landed the young quarterback instead?

Gardner Minshew began last season as the Colts backup quarterback. But after Anthony Richardson suffered a shoulder injury, he served as the starter for the majority of the year.

Minshew left this offseason, signing a two-year contract with the Las Vegas Raiders. The Colts later replaced him, agreeing to a deal with veteran Joe Flacco.

Like Minshew, Flacco could emerge as a great backup for the Colts. But then again, things might not work out, causing the team to regret not trading for Fields.

Should the Indianapolis Colts Have Traded for Justin Fields?

Justin Fields’ Career in Chicago

Fields was selected by the Bears with the 11th overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. The former Ohio State Buckeye started 10 games as a rookie, throwing for 1,870 yards and seven touchdowns. He also rushed for 420 yards and a pair of touchdowns.

In 2022, Fields passed for 2,242 yards and 17 touchdowns. He rushed for an impressive 1,143 yards and eight touchdowns as well. The Georgia native joined Michael Vick and Lamar Jackson as the only quarterbacks in NFL history to rush for 1,000 yards in a single season.

This past season, Fields threw for 2,562 yards and 16 interceptions. He also picked up 657 rushing yards and four touchdowns.

The Bears landed the first overall pick in this year’s draft. They’ll likely select USC quarterback Caleb Williams, which opened the door for the Fields trade.

Fields never took the Bears to the playoffs in any of his three seasons with the team. It remains to be seen what kind of career Williams or whomever the Bears draft, will put together in Chicago.

Fields or Flacco?

If you asked Colts fans who they’d rather have between Fields and Flacco, many would pick Fields. No, he’s not an elite starting quarterback like Patrick Mahomes or Joe Burrow. But he could probably be a very good backup.

Fields has looked like a superstar at times. For example, he threw for 335 yards and four touchdowns with a 132.7 passer rating against the Denver Broncos in Week 4 last season.

Plus, Richardson and Fields have the same playing style. That means the Colts won’t need to change their playbook much if Richardson gets hurt again and they switch to Fields.

Flacco, though is perhaps the better option. With 16 NFL seasons under his belt, he could be the perfect mentor for Richardson. He helped the Baltimore Ravens win Super Bowl XLVII as he was named MVP of the game. He has also played in three AFC Championship Games during his career.

The 39-year-old Flacco is a lot older than Fields (25). However, he’s still a solid player. He won Comeback Player of the Year honors last season after replacing Deshaun Watson and helping the Cleveland Browns reach the playoffs.

Justin Fields could eventually develop into a star in Pittsburgh, playing for head coach Mike Tomlin. But as of right now, the Colts were wise to sign Flacco.

Main Image: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports


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