Aaron Rodgers to the Colts? Why one NFL exec thinks it could happen originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston
Aaron Rodgers to the Colts?
That's a scenario one executive from an NFC team floated to ESPN's Jeremy Fowler as the Green Bay Packers quarterback's future hangs in the balance.
"One NFC executive brought up an interesting team that's sort of random but would make some sense on paper: Indianapolis," Fowler wrote. "The Colts enter the offseason with $20.6 million in cap space. They absolutely need a quarterback. Despite a four-win season, the roster is not void of talent, especially on defense. And Indy owns the fourth overall pick, an easy dangling point in a potential deal with Green Bay.
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"'[Indianapolis general manager Chris] Ballard has to get one [a quarterback] and get it right,' the executive said. 'Maybe they just draft one and save the money, but Rodgers would be different than their other past stopgap options because he's more of a sure thing.'"
Indianapolis has been in search of a quarterback since Andrew Luck's retirement in 2019. Jacoby Brissett was Indy's starter for one season followed by Philip Rivers for one season. The Colts then traded for Carson Wentz and Matt Ryan in back-to-back offseasons, with both moves proving to be whiffs.
Since Luck's departure, Indy has gone 31-34-1 with one playoff appearance over four seasons. That stretch culminated in a disastrous 4-12-1 season in 2022 that saw Ryan get benched, head coach Frank Reich lose his job and Jeff Saturday stunningly brought in as interim head coach.
While Rodgers is a safer bet than Wentz and Ryan, do the Colts have the stomach to acquire a 39-year-old quarterback who's flirted with retirement on the heels of those two trade failures? Or would general manager Chris Ballard and Co. rather use their No. 4 overall draft pick on a top quarterback prospect like Bryce Young, C.J. Stroud or Will Levis?
The potential price of acquiring Rodgers is a factor as well. The three-time MVP is owed more than $100 million in guaranteed money, and the Packers reportedly could seek at least two first-round picks if they decide to trade him.
The Colts could also opt to pursue a different veteran quarterback than Rodgers, with Lamar Jackson, Tom Brady, Derek Carr and Geno Smith among the other top signal callers who could be available.
One thing that is certain? It's going to be a wild offseason at the quarterback position.