AFC Notes: Colts, Jaguars, Titans


Though the Colts’ decision to trade away QB Carson Wentz after just one season speaks volumes, HC Frank Reich is still advocating for Wentz.  

Carson played a lot of good football,” Reich said via NFL Media’s Tom Pelissero. “We did a lot of good things as a team, he did a lot of good things as a quarterback. Three quarters of the year we were one of the teams to beat, one of the teams everybody was talking about. And then we had a pretty big time collapse in the last two weeks of the season and we all take responsibility for that, starting with me as a head coach. What would be unfair is to make Carson the scapegoat.”

Reich is one of Wentz’s biggest fans and the biggest reason the Colts traded for him in the first place, which makes the failure of his time in Indianapolis all the more concerning.

“I love Carson. He’s a brother to me. I’ll always love him, always pull for him,” Reich said. “I know he’s going to succeed. I believe a lot in him. It was just one of those things. You thought it was going to be a storybook finish where we kind of get reunited and he can kind of relaunch his career in a new place and that didn’t work out. That’s life sometimes. It’s hard. It’s hard, personally. As a coach, you get close to all the players and obviously at the quarterback position and because of my history with him. There’s nobody who will support him more and believes he’s going to succeed. I think Washington is a great fit for him and I wish him all the best.”

  • Reich told reporters that when QB Matt Ryan became available, he and GM Chris Ballard agreed that Ryan was their best option: “Once that became an option, that was the No. 1 option the whole way, as far as I was concerned, and Chris.” (Joel A. Erickson)
  • Ballard mentioned Wentz as well and was asked if the team got lucky with acquiring Ryan: “Damn right we did. But sometimes it’s patience and luck. And I think it’s a good sign when you have quarterbacks who want to be in your organization… They’re not coming if you’re just a dysfunctional mess. I think sometimes you hang on just because you made a move and you don’t want the world to see you in a negative viewpoint.” (Stephen Holder)
  • Vikings CB Patrick Peterson mentioned the Bills, Bears, Buccaneers, Colts, and Commanders were all showing interest in him as a free agent. (All Things Covered)


Jaguars HC Doug Pederson said that Jawaan Taylor and Walker Little are competing for the starting right tackle role. 

“I think it’s going to be a real good battle with Jawaan and Walker at that position,” Pederson said, via John Reid of the Florida Times-Union. “But I love everything Jawaan has done. There’s flashes and moments. We just got to get more out of the entire group, right? Not just one player, but more out of all those guys to be able to perform at a higher level.”

Regarding his relationship with GM Trent Baalke, Pederson said that the general manager “leans heavily” on his coaching staff and has been able to execute their plans. 

“I just feel like the relationship Trent and I have, he leans heavily on the coaching and our opinions,” Pederson said. “Like I said, we’re the ones that coach these players, and we want to be able to have the guys we want on the field to coach. Trent, the pro personnel side, the coaches — we came together and put our plans together.”

As for the Jaguars signing seven free agents in free agency which totaled $259.5 million, Pederson mentioned that it wasn’t ideal to add so many players but expects each of them to make an impact.  

“I don’t think you want to go into free agency signing seven guys every year,” Pederson said. “I don’t think that’s the model. And now we have the draft coming up that can also help with 12 draft picks to bring in more talent, depth and competition. But the guys we signed will be impact players, you know, right away.”

  • Jaguars DE Arden Key‘s one-year deal carries a base value of $4 million and can earn up to $7 million including a $1.5 million signing bonus. His $1.5 million base salary is guaranteed and can earn a $500,000 workout bonus, $500,000 in per-game roster bonuses, and $3 million in sacks and Pro Bowl incentives. (Mike Garafolo)


Titans HC Mike Vrabel is pumped to add WR Robert Woods to the roster, as the tough-nosed, gritty wideout will be a perfect fit for Tennessee’s offense. 

“Everywhere he has been, he has been a great teammate first and foremost,” Vrabel said via Jim Wyatt of the team website. “He cares about the football team, and he is versatile – plays outside and inside, blocks, has route craft, has good play strength. Everywhere you follow him he has been a great teammate and guys rave about him. We are excited to help him rehab and get him back healthy.”

Vrabel also discussed the addition of TE Austin Hooper, who signed a one-year deal after being cut by the Browns and is viewed by the Titans as an all-around tight end who is a threat as a blocker and receiver.

“Hopefully he can do both,” Vrabel said. “We are just looking for guys who can play on the line of scrimmage, play off the ball, be able to get open. He has played on third down, and he has really done a lot of that in his career. … He has shown that he can do a lot.”

  • Ohio State OT Nicholas Petit-Frere said he will have a top 30 visit with the Titans at some point. (Billy M)

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