Colts Need to Call Philip Rivers After Carson Wentz COVID Diagnosis

Philip Rivers
Philip Rivers / Andy Lyons/GettyImages

The Indianapolis Colts are absolutely rolling with impressive victories in consecutive weeks over playoff-caliber opponents. Jonathan Taylor is making a case for MVP, but Carson Wentz has helped keep the ship steady and cut down on his turnovers by a significant number. Most weeks, the Colts win without needing Wentz, but he has usually been good enough when called upon. Indianapolis has two games left with a clear path to the top wild card seed, and a shot at the AFC South title if the Tennessee Titans stumble down the stretch.

Or at least they did.

Everything is up in the air after today's news that Wentz is hitting the COVID list. Since he is unvaccinated, he's out for a minimum of 10 days. He'll miss Sunday's matchup against the Raiders and is at risk of missing the following week's matchup against the Jaguars if his conditioning suffers during his time away from the team. This means 2021 six-round pick Sam Ehlinger is the man the Colts will lean on to put away the season.

Ehlinger is... bad. Which is to be expected of a sixth-round rookie quarterback, but is nevertheless the truth. The Colts are in must-win mode and having a lame duck quarterback is going to significantly hamstring the offense.

Unless they call Philip Rivers.

It's obviously a long shot. Rivers seems perfectly content coaching high school football in his home state of Alabama and hanging out with his impressively large family. But he knows Frank Reich's system as well as anybody on the roster. He is a more reliable option than Ehlinger in the sense that the Colts can trust him to not make simple mistakes like fumbling the snap that are always in play when a rookie is starting a big game.

Rivers was pretty darn good in 2020 as he guided the Colts to the playoffs. Just offer him a few million to help out for two weeks. He might not even need to play the second game! It's worth a shot. The alternative is having Ehlinger turn into Mac Jones and hand the ball off 45 times and hope that's enough.

Chances are it won't be.