Colts: Projecting Jacob Eason’s stat line if he makes Week 1 start
By Jerry Trotta
The vibe surrounding the Indianapolis Colts was morbid after news broke that Carson Wentz needed foot surgery and would miss between 5-12 weeks.
Luckily for the Colts, Wentz is making quick strides in his recovery and seemingly has a puncher’s chance to be available for Week 1.
That would be a dream scenario, as it was once feared that Wentz could miss up to the first four games of the new season. However, barring a setback, it looks like the the 28-year-old will return in Week 2 at the latest.
It’s still too early to tell, but there’s reason for optimism…even if Wentz is ultimately unable to suit up against the Seahawks on Sept. 12.
After all, Jacob Eason handled himself well in his preseason debut last Sunday, and has followed that up with an excellent week of practice.
With that in mind, let’s delve into a prediction of the stats Eason could post vs Seattle’s relatively soft pass defense if he’s given the nod.
Colts: Projecting Jacob Eason’s stat line if he starts Week 1
While Eason will be under immense pressure if he’s given the start, he gets a dream matchup against the Seahawks (weird to read for a time-traveler from 2017), who ranked 31st (second to last) in the NFL in passing yards allowed per game (285.0) last season.
If the Colts’ offensive line, which is slowly starting to get healthy, can keep Eason upright, the 2020 fifth-rounder should more than hold his own.
The thought of Carlos Dunlap lining up against one of Indy’s stopgap left tackles is terrifying, but the Colts should be able to neutralize him by sending double teams.
Eason should also be wary of Seattle’s star safety tandem of Jamal Adams and Quandre Diggs. They’ll be looking to bait the young QB into making some risky throws, so Eason better be mindful of this and not fall into the trap.
Having said that, the Seahawks’ cornerback group is anything but intimidating, so Eason should have open receivers to throw to.
As long as the moment doesn’t prove too big for the 23-year-old, he should finish something like 18-of-26 for 245 yards and two touchdowns to zero interceptions, with perhaps a fumble if he’s whacked on his blindside.
The Seahawks were actually strong against the run last year — they ranked fifth in yards per game at 95.6 — but we still expect the Colts to play to their strengths and look to get Jonathan Taylor going early to set up play action.
If they’re able to do that, Eason should have a nice day at the office.