QB Search: Who Will Be Under Center Week 1 for the Indianapolis Colts?

Indianapolis Colts quarterback Carson Wentz (2) runs the ball up the field during the second half of an Indianapolis Colts game against the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday, Sept. 19, 2021, at Lucas Oil Stadium. The Rams won 27-24.
Indianapolis Colts quarterback Carson Wentz (2) runs the ball up the field during the second half of an Indianapolis Colts game against the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday, Sept. 19, 2021, at Lucas Oil Stadium. The Rams won 27-24. /
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NFL, Kirk Cousins, Minnesota Vikings
NFL QB Kirk Cousins #8 of the Minnesota Vikings (Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images) /

Trade Options: Kirk Cousins, Aaron Rodgers, Russell Wilson, Derek Carr

Most Likely: Kirk Cousins

Alright, finally we arrive at an option that is somewhat practical. The Vikings severed ties with long time head coach Mike Zimmer, and hired Rams offensive coordinator Kevin O’Connell. Cousins is entering his final season under contract and it is worth wondering if O’Connell will want to bring in his own guy (or even see what Kellen Mond can do).

Minnesota currently sits at 12th in the draft order, giving them a chance to secure a quarterback early via trade up or by staying put at 12. It would take some contract restructuring, but if the new Vikings regime is set on getting their own guy in there, the added draft capital from a potential Cousins trade could go a long way to ensuring they land who they want. Cousins is coming off arguably the best season of his career, having tossed 33 touchdowns to only seven interceptions. He provides better consistency in terms of accuracy and is an upgrade in nearly every department from Wentz.

It is not a groundbreaking move, but with the Indianapolis Colts only being a few plays away in 2021, you could argue that Cousins would have been able to make those plays. It is worth kicking the tires on if the contract can be reworked to help alleviate any cap issues. A current or future second-round pick might be enough for the Vikings to consider.

Longshot: Aaron Rodgers

Aaron Rodgers is best viewed as a long shot for a myriad of reasons. Chief among them is the fact that Green Bay has come out to say that they are willing to give Rodgers a contract extension that ties him to the Packers for the rest of his career. It remains to be seen if Rodgers is as interested in coming back as they are to have him back.

Another major hurdle in the efforts for Chris Ballard to swing a trade for the back-to-back NFL MVP is the fact that the Colts are without a first-round pick in 2022. It hampers any potential trade offer that the Colts could put together, especially when teams like the Eagles or Giants could offer multiple first-round picks in this draft alone. Even the Broncos — widely considered the favorite to land him if he is traded — can build a significantly better offer around the ninth overall pick.

As fun as it is to daydream Aaron Rodgers in the blue and white, it is not a likely outcome at all. Nothing short of Rodgers specifically demanding his way to Indianapolis would result in him dawning the horseshoe.

Not Happening: Derek Carr/Russell Wilson

Derek Carr would be a great option via trade if the Raiders were willing to part ways. The early rumblings are that Josh McDaniels prefers to build around Carr rather than send him away. There are reports stating that Las Vegas will do everything in their power to sign Carr to a long-term deal, even offering the franchise tag as a potential fix. Either way, it seems certain that Derek will remain in the silver and black for at least one more season.

Russell Wilson is in a similar spot. He would be a great addition to the Indianapolis Colts and would immediately vault them towards the top of the AFC. The problem here is two-fold. First, the Seahawks seem determined to bring him back and give this core one final shot. Pete Carroll is not eager to move on from Wilson, and Seattle holds all the cards with Russ still under contract.

The second issue is that the Seahawks are without a first-round pick this year. This means that any trade for Wilson would be predicated on receiving at least one first rounder from the upcoming 2022 NFL Draft. The Indianapolis Colts, unfortunately, do not even have their own to bargain with. Because of such a high asking price, coupled with the lack of willingness to trade him on Seattles part, I don’t give this a chance of happening this offseason. Ask me again in 12 months, though.

Wildcard: Jordan Love

Okay, let’s get weird for a minute. If the Packers are successful in their effort to lock Aaron Rodgers up for the long haul, they could be willing to move off from Jordan Love in an effort to load up the roster with more weapons. In this event, a team could really benefit from the Packers patience and pick up this former first-round pick at a fraction of the cost. Jordan Love is still young and who’s to say that the Colts don’t have him rated higher than any passer in the 2022 NFL Draft? Hey, it is at least worth entertaining!