INDIANAPOLIS – Jacob Eason knew the Colts had those two second-round picks, both falling in the area where the big-armed Washington quarterback thought he would hear his name called during the 2020 Draft.
That call from the Colts eventually came, albeit much later than he originally thought.
Still, when Eason got selected doesn’t change how the quarterback views what is waiting for him in Indianapolis.
Eason believes there’s no better opportunity in the entire league than the one he’s getting with the Colts.
“I had great communication with the Colts. I think I talked to them more than any other team whether it was Coach (Frank) Reich or QB coaches, I talked to everyone in the organization,” Eason said after the Colts did take him with the No. 122 overall pick in the 4th round. “It was pretty cool because it wasn’t all about football all the time. A lot of it was personal information about my family and my college experience. Coach (Reich) would ask me some off the wall questions then we’d get into the film room and he’d kind of teach me some of the offense and then I kind of go and connect to my offense. It was really cool.
“I got to get a building of the start of our foundation, of our relationship and I’m looking forward to getting down to Indianapolis, meeting in person and really getting to work and learning. There’s a great situation to learn from Philip (Rivers) and Jacoby (Brissett) in that QB room. I’m very excited to get in there and learn from those guys and help out in any way I can. I’m very fortunate to be in the position that I am and it’s a great fit for me.”
While any potential to battle for actual playing time for Eason might not occur until 2022—and many believe game reps are needed for a guy who has made just 13 total starts over the last three years—he’s still looking at the chance to learn as something that must be embraced.
Being a sponge to the tutelage of Frank Reich and Rivers is a pretty attractive situation.
It’s Reich’s coaching that has helped see career years from Rivers, Andrew Luck and Carson Wentz, while being coached by the now headman in Indianapolis.
Reich pointed out an improvement in footwork and reading progressions as two areas that Eason needs to work on.
Eason said that he focused on becoming more consistent and furthering his football IQ during the draft process.
“I’m a very big believer in confidence and I have a lot of confidence in the way I can play the game,” Eason, who threw 39 touchdowns and 16 interceptions last season, says. “The game is really what drives me. The satisfaction of winning football games and going out and playing in front of huge fan bases. I know Indy’s got a great fan base just like I had at Washington and Georgia (where Eason played from 2016-17). My drive is to be the best at what I do kind of comes from within me. I really enjoy going out there and doing the work on my own, whether it’s throwing one-on-one with my QB coach or throwing routes on air to my receivers. Every step of the way, I think I can learn something new and pick something up there. So I’m just very excited to get in and learn and kind of see how Philip (Rivers) and Jacoby (Brissett) do it and get in there and challenge myself with this next opportunity. I’m just very thankful.”
Following the selection of Eason on Saturday, the critics pounced on the opportunity to offer their opinion on why Eason might have fallen all the way to the middle of Round 4.
That criticism included some questions about the total character of Eason and whether he possess the makeup to be a professional quarterback.
“Everyone is entitled to their own opinions,” Eason said when asked about those skeptics. “It’s football and in today’s society there is a lot of media around it and hey, you know my job is to go in there, prove those stories are false and go in there and learn from a great coaching staff and get in there with an outstanding team. I’m going to go in there as soon as this virus is calmed down and go in there and compete my nuts off, go in there and prove myself as a work horse and a leader and a good football player.
“They can say all they want but the truth of the matter is I’m going to be a person to go in there and prove them wrong.”
And he’s going to do it donning the jersey of a team that has always held a special place to him.
“I actually grew up a huge Indianapolis fan,” the Seattle native says. “I was a tremendously big fan of Peyton Manning’s. I think one year when I was six or seven, I got his jersey under the Christmas tree and had Colts hats, Colts shoes, you name it.
“So full circle, it’s pretty spectacular that the Colts ended up selecting me in the fourth round. I’m super excited to get down there, figure out my new home and get in the locker room with those teammates and just dive in and learn and grow.”