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INDIANAPOLISSimply, the Colts couldn’t provide what Gardner Minshew wants.

And that was seen pretty clearly in Minshew finding a new home with the Las Vegas Raiders on Monday.

Minshew inked a 2-year deal for $25 million, with reportedly $15 million guaranteed. Those are very strong numbers, indicating the Raiders believe Minshew is their starter in 2024.

If Minshew was gung-ho about wanting a realistic chance at earning some playing time in 2024, he was best served to try and find that in another spot, unless he was banking on Anthony Richardson getting hurt again.

From the Colts point of view, they are not overlooking the value in a backup quarterback.

Honestly, how could they knowing what Richardson went through as a rookie, combined with the playing style they want him to continue to utilize moving forward.

“I think it’s a position you’ve got to continue to evaluate every year,” Chris Ballard said at the end of the season of the backup spot. “The backup quarterback is going to be very important, I think we saw that (in 2023).

“I don’t want to underestimate the value of the (No. 2 quarterback).”

The AFC had several examples of what value in a backup can have in a team maintaining a playoff push.

Cleveland, Pittsburgh and Houston each won December/January games while starting a variety of backup quarterbacks, which helped all three of them eventually cement their spots in the postseason.

With Minshew finding an NFL home that is giving him more of a playing-time opportunity than Indianapolis, the Colts must now weigh where to go behind Richardson.

Both Ehlinger and Kellen Mond (who the Colts added last season) are under contract for 2024.

Here are some of the other free agent quarterbacks still on the open market: Josh Dobbs, Joe Flacco, Jimmy Garoppolo, Tyler Huntley, Ryan Tannehill, Carson Wentz.

Based off Ballard’s comments, there’s plenty of belief in investing some notable resources in whoever is backing up Richardson.

How the Colts approach that will be interesting.

-Do they value a similar style QB to Richardson?

-How much will actual starting experience (like Minshew brought) factor in?

-What about personality and fit, knowing this player is going to be right there with Richardson during a key year (or years) of the young QB’s development?

Ballard has downplayed the style aspect, stressing more of the ‘can we win with the guy’ point of view.

This area now needs addressing in 2024 with Minshew off to Vegas.

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