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Indianapolis Colts backup quarterback Sam Ehlinger will miss five to six weeks after he suffered a sprained knee in their final preseason game on Friday night, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Ehlinger was battling for the No. 2 spot on the Colts’ roster, as starting quarterback Carson Wentz is recovering from a foot injury and may not be ready for Week 1. If that’s the case, backup Jacob Eason will now start instead of Ehlinger.
Sam Ehlinger suffered a knee sprain and will recover without any medical procedures in about 5-6 weeks, per source. So if Carson Wentz isn’t ready by week 1, it’ll be Jacob Eason instead of Ehlinger.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 28, 2021
Ehlinger’s injury ‘didn’t look good’
Ehlinger went down in the first half of their 27-17 win against the Detroit Lions on Friday night, and did not return.
Colts coach Frank Reich opted to send Brett Hundley in to finish out the game, preserving Eason in case he’s needed in the regular season.
Reich didn’t have much of an update on Ehlinger after the contest, but he wasn’t optimistic.
“It didn’t look good,” Reich said, via ESPN. “We need to wait for the doctor’s final say.”
While a knee sprain isn’t great, it sounds like Ehlinger avoided serious injury and won’t need any medical procedures before returning. At best, Ehlinger is looking at a return in early October.
The Colts took Ehlinger in the sixth round of the draft earlier this year. He threw for more than 2,500 yards and had 26 touchdowns for Texas last season.
Will Carson Wentz be ready?
Though Ehlinger is out of the picture for Week 1, Eason may not be needed either.
Wentz underwent foot surgery for a broken bone on Aug. 2, but returned to practice on Monday and seemed to be moving much better than expected.
“What helped was surgery was the best-case scenario and recovery was really quick,” Reich said Monday, via ESPN. “Feels like he’s a week ahead of schedule.”
The Colts will open their season on Sept. 12 against the Seattle Seahawks, and are listed as +2 underdogs on BetMGM.
"I'm optimistic, but we'll see how it responds," Wentz said Monday about playing against Seattle. "As long as there's nothing I can do to make it worse, I've played through a lot worse.”