The NFL’s quarterback carousel continues to spin for a second straight day.
The Indianapolis Colts are trading quarterback Carson Wentz to the Washington Commanders for a package of picks, a person with knowledge of the move told USA TODAY Sports. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the decision was not yet official.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter was first to report the news.
Indianapolis will receive a third-round picks in 2022 and 2023, with the latter potentially becoming a second-round pick if Wentz plays 70% of the team’s snaps, Schefter reported. The teams also will swap 2022 second-round picks, per Schefter.
The Colts are moving on from Wentz just one year after acquiring him from the Philadelphia Eagles for what became a first-round draft pick as well as a third-round selection.
Wentz, 29, threw for 3,563 yards with 27 touchdowns and seven interceptions. But his struggles in the Week 18 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars led to Indianapolis being eliminated from playoff contention.
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At the NFL scouting combine, Colts general manager Chris Ballard was noncommittal about Wentz’s future with the team.
“I know I’m going to get a lot of questions about Carson right now. I don’t have a direct answer for you,” Ballard said last Tuesday. “(Jim) Irsay, Frank and I will sit down over the next 10 days and figure out where it’s going.”
The Colts will now have their fifth different starting quarterback in as many years. The only remaining signal-callers on the roster are second-year passer Sam Ehlinger and James Morgan, who landed on the practice squad last December
Said Colts linebacker Darius Leonard on Twitter: “Here we go again! About to be 5 years with the Colts and 5 different QBs! Thank you Carson for everything this year my guy! Wish you nothing but the best!”
Commanders coach Ron Rivera said at the combine that the team was “trying to truly cover every base” in taking stock of its options at quarterback in free agency, trades and the draft. Ryan Fitzpatrick began last season as the team’s starter, with Taylor Heinicke taking over after the veteran was sidelined by a hip injury.
Washington has started 10 different quarterbacks at least one game since 2018.
“There’s an old saying: ‘What are you willing to pay for that Major League Baseball card? Whatever you pay, that’s what you think the value is,” Rivera said. “So, when you get in these negotiations with another team, it’s whatever they’re asking for, is it what you’re willing to pay for? Then that’s what it is. Does anybody really care what was traded for Matthew Stafford last year? No.”
Wentz has three years remaining on his contract. He is due $28 million in 2022, including a $5 million roster bonus next week.
The move comes one day after the Denver Broncos agreed to acquire quarterback Russell Wilson in a trade with the Seattle Seahawks. The Commanders offered a significant package of picks to the Seahawks in an effort to land Wilson but were rebuffed, according to multiple reports.