Press Taylor watched Carson Wentz fight through a lot during his time with the Philadelphia Eagles.
“I saw him throw a touchdown pass on the fourth play after a torn ACL,” Taylor, formerly the Eagles’ quarterbacks coach and now a senior offensive assistant with the Colts, said. “Obviously he played and had a fractured back, we didn’t know at the time. I’ve seen him play through a lot — broken toes, people didn’t know stuff like that.”
And quite literally, Taylor — and the rest of us — saw Wentz play through a sprained ankle nobody knew about until after Sunday’s game. Wentz suffered his first of two ankle sprains against the Rams in the third quarter and played at a high level until his second ankle sprain knocked him out of the game.
That’s all to say it’s still too early to tell if Wentz will play when the Colts travel to Nashville to face the Tennessee Titans on Sunday. Head coach Frank Reich said Wednesday Wentz was not ruled out for the Titans game as the quarterback and team do everything possible to get his ankles to a point where he could play Sunday.
But if the Colts are not without Wentz, the team’s available backup quarterbacks — Jacob Eason and Brett Hundley (Sam Ehlinger is on injured reserve) — are staying ready in case their number is called.
“Day by day, letting coach Reich decide there, just preparing,” Eason said. “I think everybody in that room’s preparing. Leave that decision up to coach Reich and just prepare like I am the guy.”
Eason made his regular season debut in relief of Wentz against the Rams in an incredibly difficult situation — a two-minute drill needing three points to tie against the reigning best defense in the NFL — and was intercepted by defensive back Jalen Ramsey. Still, Eason was happy to get the chance to go back and evaluate the film of the snaps he took in Week 2.
“I’m just glad I got an opportunity, not for Carson’s sake, but for my own sake to get one of those opportunities,” Eason said. “Learn from it, grow from it and continue to improve and see things out there.”
The Colts added Hundley in training camp after a bone fragment became dislodged in Wentz’s foot that required surgery. The 28-year-old Hundley is going on his seventh year in the NFL and has nine career starts, all with the Green Bay Packers in 2017 in place of an injured Aaron Rodgers.
“Things change fast. And with the NFL, with football, that’s one of the biggest things, especially being a backup quarterback, you just gotta be ready,” Hundley said of what he learned from that experience in 2017. “And sometimes that means being ready in any given situation so honestly stay ready so you ain’t gotta get ready.”
Hundley, who’s on the Colts’ practice squad and only appeared in one preseason game, said his preparation hasn’t changed from what he’s done in previous years and that his knowledge of the Colts’ playbook has continued to grow since he arrived in Indiana in late July.
“I feel good with this offense,” Hundley said. “Thankfully I was in Green Bay’s offense so there’s some transition and some things that sort of work together. You learn it and you take it one day at a time. No matter what happens each day is just figuring out and I’ll be ready if called upon.”