Matthew Stafford wants the Colts. The Colts should also want Matthew Stafford.
ONE WEEK AGO: For the second time in year and a half, the Colts have been blindsided by a QB making an early decision.
NOW: Oh, this Matthew Stafford thing is just going to sort of…fall into our laps, huh? Not a problem!
Construction on the Philip Rivers Bridge, which we all expected to last for two seasons after a solid showing in Year 1, came to a crashing halt last week when the veteran announced his retirement instead. This was far from devastating the Colts, though, a team that might’ve reached its ceiling with Rivers at the helm this season and can now look elsewhere to a fertile market for signal callers instead of being ruthless with the veteran they already had.
As opposed to handing the keys to fourth-rounder Jacob Eason and taking a step back in the transition, it’s quite clear Indianapolis should aim higher. And though Deshaun Watson is tempting, he resides within the division, and even Jack Easterby isn’t crazy enough to mastermind a trade to Indy.
So, who’s next? Matthew Stafford, ready to mutually part ways with the Lions, seems like the next-best thing, and he appears to be barking up the same tree.
The initial report comes from ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler, and has rival executives believing that the Colts make sense because of formal interest from Stafford’s side.
So says Fowler:
This is a spot Stafford most definitely has his eyes on, from what I’m hearing. And NFL execs starting telegraphing this one last month.
“Makes a lot of sense, which is why the Colts will really look into making this work,” an NFC exec said.
We’d be interested in joining Chris Ballard’s team too if we were, say, a 33-year-old likely Hall of Fame quarterback in need of a few playoff runs and team/individual accolades to bolster his resumé.
For years, the New England Patriots would’ve been the popular pick here, but their current roster is all hope, dreams, smoke, mirrors and cap space. They can promise Stafford they’ll improve and that Bill Belichick will stick around, but the Colts have the coach, the running game, and the defensive pedigree, a trio of elements the QB has never before interacted with for an extended period of time.
Stafford has always seemed like a bit of a compiler because he’s never had any of the other pieces of a complete football team around him for longer than a season.
In essence, Stafford has Rivers’ guile, a stronger arm, and the advantage of age. The Colts should be all over this, and the feeling’s apparently mutual.