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Sunday, March 3, 2024

Blaming Minshew is the easy things for the Colts to do

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I’ve been around professional sports long enough to know that there’s a gazillion excuse when a team is playing really poorly. 

People whisper behind other’s backs, fingers are pointed, and while there’s plenty of blame to go around, nobody takes it without trying to avoid such.

The Quarterback position obviously gets the white-hot spotlight in the National Football League, and the Indianapolis Colts pinned their hopes on one Anthony Richardson who is now sidelined after shoulder surgery. 

In theory a young, incredible physical specimen of an athlete such as Richardson could very well fully recover, but there’s absolutely no guarantee that he will, and while some call that potentially tragic, l will point to the thirty-two million guaranteed dollars he signed for and say one way or the other it’s going to be just fine for the always polite and articulate young man who unfairly was dubbed a savior.

When your first string QB goes down, the next guy in line gets his shot, and when the Colts signed Gardner Minshew in the off-season, it was in my opinion a good acquisition, considering his level of knowledge of new coach Shane Steichen’s system from their collective time together in Philadelphia with the Eagles.

Minshew fully knew what his role would be as a backup, and he embraced the opportunity to be a mentor for Richardson from day one and helped him develop an understanding of the playbook.

Now thrusted into game action, Minshew is a convenient punching bag for both the fan base and certain members of the media who continue to snicker behind his back and repeatedly question his NFL worthiness, which in reality is ridiculous. 

Granted, he’ll never be mistaken for Tom Brady or make one forget about Joe Montana, but that’s not what he’s supposed to do as a backup quarterback.

His statistics while pedestrian in nature are certainly not totally embarrassing, as he’s thrown for fourteen hundred yards while completing sixty-three percent of his passes.  There’s been seven touchdowns via the air, and he’s rushed for two more. Sure, he’s tossed seven interceptions, but he’s also been sacked fourteen times and ran for his life quite a bit behind a second tier (at best)

offensive line that continues to be both anemic in terms of pass protection, and overall effort, thereby forcing Minshew out of the pocket and then forced to freelance way too often. 

It’s also worth mentioning that Gardner isn’t playing both ways and has no responsibility for the five hundred yards of offense that the lackluster Colts defense surrendered last Sunday against the New Orleans Saints.

With no pass rush and a secondary that would have difficulty stopping Center Grove High School, this defensive unit is not only languishing near the bottom of the NFL statistically, they’ve actually taken up residency with an option to renew their lease next season. 

Simply put, this is a dismal team, and it’s a miracle they’ve won three games at this juncture.

There’s plenty of reasons for the mediocrity and more than enough blame to go around, so why does everyone point to Minshew? Because it’s easy to, but that alone doesn’t make it even close to being right. 

Danny Bridges, who wouldn’t take Gardner Minshew’s job for fifty million a snap, can be reached at (317) 370-8447 or at bridgeshd@aol.com.

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