LAS VEGAS — Just weeks after the Colts named Sam Ehlinger the starting quarterback for the remainder of the season, veteran Matt Ryan returned to the starting lineup for Sunday’s game against the Raiders — the first of the season. team under interim coach Jeff on Saturday.
The Colts had moved to Ehlinger ahead of their Week 8 game against the Washington Commanders after Ryan had a shoulder separation. At the time, coach Frank Reich – who was fired on Monday and replaced by Saturday – said the move was intended to be permanent. Owner Jim Irsay heavily influenced the decision, sources told ESPN.
But Ryan returned to training this week and, it seems, Saturday changed his mind. The decision comes after Saturday, when his introductory press conference said Ehlinger would remain the starting quarterback.
But Friday, Saturday had started to recede.
Asked how he came to the decision to start Ehlinger, Saturday said: “I evaluate all the time. I tell these guys, it’s not a closed competition by any stretch of the imagination. I going to put the best 11 in there So anything we can do to win games is what we will do Both had great weeks of training Sam for a young man is a guy energetic. He brings a lot of pop. Matt, coming out too, I was impressed. He was over there throwing it.”
Saturday added, “Who starts at quarterback will be up to me,” when asked about the perception that Irsay was behind the decision.
The Colts were 0-2 with Ehlinger starting. In last week’s loss to the New England Patriots, the Colts had a historically poor offensive performance, going 0-14 on third attempts and generating 121 total rushing yards — their fewest since 1997.