Colts not going after David Garrard –
The Colts have not contacted free agent QB David Garrard. With the inept Kerry Collins being evaluated for a concussion and Peyton Manning (neck) likely out for the season, Colts fans are clamoring for an addition. But the team might be best off going with Collins and Curtis Painter, thus entering themselves in the Suck for Luck sweepstakes. The Colts have not shown any interest in Kurt Warner or Marc Bulger either, although they are both retired anyway.
I was thinking last night that Indy should make a move for Garrard, whom Jacksonville almost certainly shouldn’t have let go. They probably will have to lose every game– something of which they’re undoubtedly capable– to get Andrew Luck, but it still is amazing to think that a team like the Colts would even be in a position where flushing a season looked like the team’s best (and possibly only) option.
Luck has received wide praise and approval for his supposed ability to be an NFL star, but the Pacific Twelve isn’t exactly a professional proving ground for quarterbacks. Of the QBs coming out of that conference in recent years, I think only
onetwothree– Mark Sanchez (and Aaron Rogers duh) (ok does Matt Cassel really count?)– isare playingstarting in the NFL right now. (Matt Leinart may be filling the backup role for the Texans, but he’s a starter in the hearts of Houston’s young girls.) Ryan Leaf, Akili Smith, and Joseph Harrington are done. Carson Palmer is “retired.” Alex Smith doesn’t count because his Utes weren’t in the conference when he played there, and without a former conference coach as his head coach, he wouldn’t have a job in the league either. The list of great Pac-10/Pacific Twelve quarterbacks in recent memory begins with John Elway, Warren Moon, and Troy Aikman, and it ends with Rogers. (Ok, that list turned out to be a little more impressive than I thought.) I’m not saying that Luck won’t make a great pro and hasn’t been great in college. I am saying that, with the exception of Rogers, the recent crop has been a disappointment.
Given the volume of information here on Kerry Collins, it’s obvious I thought he would be a viable option when Indianapolis signed him this fall. If the Colts grab Garrard, they will win some games– at the very least, two against Garrard’s former team– and winning games should be the objective of a team so directionless following the loss of one player. I’m waffling back and forth on this. Without Peyton Manning, Indy is going to have to start over completely. Maybe there’s no better way to start from scratch than with a gem of a QB prospect. That’s the very model they used to succeed when they drafted Manning. Manning’s absence has revealed so many other weaknesses, though, that draft picks may be better spent elsewhere, and a still-viable QB like Garrard could lead the franchise through rebuilding.