Heading into the 2021 season, the Indianapolis Colts are one of the most intriguing teams in the NFL.
Their roster talent is amongst the best in the league, and as has been the case with them since the retirement of Andrew Luck.
Consistent quarterback play will be the key to their season.
Philip Rivers wore the blue and white for a season last year and did an admirable job, but the franchise was hopeful that they’d get an upgrade this year under center with the 28-year-old Carson Wentz.
— Carson Wentz (@cj_wentz) March 18, 2021
Unfortunately for Wentz and the Colts, his tenure with the team is not off to a very good start.
Late last week, he suffered a foot injury that seems likely to cost him games during the regular season.
It seemed like Wentz was a certainty to undergo surgery as soon as possible, but reports are now indicating that he might go the rest and rehabilitation route.
#Colts QB Carson Wentz plans to try to rest and rehab his foot injury over the next few days, source said, rather than have immediate surgery. If all goes well, Week 1 is in play. If it doesn’t improve, the answer may be surgery.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) August 1, 2021
Regardless of which treatment option Wentz and the team determine is best, Colts fans should absolutely be concerned with this inauspicious start to training camp.
One of the main reasons for excitement with acquiring Wentz was the possibility that he could recapture the magic he had with the Philadelphia Eagles under then offensive coordinator Frank Reich.
Of course, Reich is the current head coach of the Colts, and the hope for Indianapolis was that he could re-instill a level of confidence in Wentz that made him an MVP candidate in 2017.
Part of Wentz’s allure was the idea that he would be able to use his legs to pick up first downs, or keep plays alive within the pocket at the very least.
With a foot injury now looking to derail his 2021 campaign, it dampens the prospects for the specific attributes that could’ve made Wentz a notable upgrade over Rivers.
Is a hobbled, possibly immobile Wentz that much of an upgrade over the 2020 version of Rivers?
While his particular ailment during training camp is cause for alarm, his track record of not being able to stay on the field is once again at the forefront of the discussion.
His most serious injury came in December 2017, when he tore his ACL and LCL in a game against the Los Angeles Rams.
The very next season, Wentz was forced out of the 2018 campaign late in the year due to a fractured vertebrae in his back.
In the Eagles’ first playoff game during the 2019 season, Wentz bowed out early with a concussion.
While the final ailment could be chalked up to some bad luck, the others, coupled with the current foot problem, seem to add to an uncomfortable narrative for the former prospect out of North Dakota.
It’s not just his recent performance on the field with the Eagles that raises red flags; it’s his ability to even stay on it for sustained periods of time.
We’ll see how Wentz and the Colts decide to move forward in the coming weeks.
Considering how important of a year this is for both the player and the team though, there might be added motivation for the quarterback to get back on the field and gut it out, with the running game as the focal point of the offense.