Indianapolis Colts Confusingly Elect To Start Nick Foles Again On Sunday

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The Indianapolis Colts are one of the biggest disappointments in the NFL this season. A team that was supposed to contend for the AFC South title is 4-10-1, eliminated from the playoffs and starting Nick Foles at quarterback.

The division was ripe for the taking, too. The Tennessee Titans and Jacksonville Jaguars are tied for the South lead at 7-8.

But bringing in Matt Ryan to be the team’s starting quarterback did not work out. His passer rating this season (83.9) is his lowest since 2009 — his sophomore NFL season. He’s thrown nearly as many interceptions (13) as touchdowns (14). The team is 4-7-1 in his 12 starts.

Earlier this season, Ryan was benched in favor of second-year signal caller Sam Ehlinger. He played OK in a 17-16 loss against Washington before a poor outing at New England.

The loss to the Patriots cost head coach Frank Reich his job and the team hired ESPN analyst Jeff Saturday to replace him on an interim basis. Saturday turned the reins back over to Matt Ryan.

Ryan led the team to a win over the Las Vegas Raiders in Saturday’s debut, but proceeded to lose the next four games. Saturday decided to move to the team’s third starting quarterback this season, veteran Nick Foles.

Foles was terrible on Monday night against the Chargers. He completed less than 60% of his passes (17-29) for 143 yards. Foles threw no touchdown passes, led the team to just three points, tossed three interceptions and took seven sacks.

Jeff Saturday's decision to start Nick Foles over Sam Ehlinger for the Colts is questionable, at best.
Jeff Saturday’s decision to start Nick Foles over Sam Ehlinger for the Colts is questionable, at best. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)

He also led wide receiver Ashton Dulin into a concussion with a terrible throw.

Despite that performance, Saturday announced Tuesday that he is sticking with Foles.

Not only that, but Saturday expects Foles to start both of the team’s remaining games.

Colts to start Nick Foles … but why?

There is no rational argument for starting Foles. If you’re going to start a veteran QB, you might as well start Matt Ryan. He at least knows the roster, has had the practice time, and won four starts this season.

The better option would be to give Sam Ehlinger a chance. Granted, I don’t believe Ehlinger is a long-term option — and clearly, neither do the Colts. But starting a veteran who can’t play a lick over a second-year player who showed at least SOME promise in one of his starts is wild decision-making.

Jeff Saturday clearly believes Nick Foles gives his team the best chance to win, since this could be his shot to get a full-time NFL head coaching gig.

But other GMs and owners have to be questioning this decision.

I certainly am.


Follow Dan Zaksheske on Twitter: @OutkickDanZ

Written by Dan Zaksheske

Dan began his sports media career at ESPN, where he survived for nearly a decade. Once the Stockholm Syndrome cleared, he made his way to Outkick. He is secure enough in his masculinity to admit he is a cat-enthusiast with three cats, one of which is named “Brady” because his wife wishes she were married to Tom instead of him.

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