Indianapolis Colts

Colts GM Ballard shares first impressions of QB Wentz in advance of NFL draft

Indianapolis Colts general manager Chris Ballard on the field before the NFL game between the Miami Dolphins and the Indianapolis Colts on Nov. 10, 2019, at Lucas Oil Stadium, in Indianapolis; and Carson Wentz of the Philadelphia Eagles warms up prior to the game against the New York Jets at Lincoln Financial Field on Oct. 6, 2019, in Philadelphia. (Ballard Photo by Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) (Wentz Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — For Colts fans upset over a lack of free-agent firepower inbound to Indianapolis, Colts General Manager Chris Ballard is willing to listen.

Yes, adding a high-profile pass rusher off the edge or a acquiring a big-name left tackle would have reignited the AFC title contention talk across Colts nation. 

But if you study and understand Ballard’s tendencies, the conservative approach this offseason is no surprise. That may point some toward the notion that Ballard and the Colts need to find multiple immediate impact players at next week’s 2021 NFL draft in Cleveland. However, this also appears to be a bit of a stretch in Ballard’s mind.

“I’m not saying we are a Super Bowl-ready team,” Ballard said. “We still have work to do and that will continue on after the draft.”

On Friday, Ballard shared he believes there are “plenty” of attractive options for the Colts with the No. 21 overall pick next Thursday night in Cleveland.

As we wait for these cards to flip over throughout the first round, the ace is already face-up in Indianapolis.

“Carson (Wentz) has been great,” Ballard said Friday. “He’s got a great sense of humor. Doesn’t take himself too seriously. He is dialed in. He works. I would probably compare him a little more to Andrew (Luck) than Phillip (Rivers), but he is great to be around.”

Ballard also detailed the even larger mountain of film that was piled onto the Colts’ scouts and coaching staff this year. 

Without a normal NFL combine and the inability to watch practice in-person leading up to this draft, Ballard estimates his team has watched a combine 1,400 hours of tape on the rookie class over the past two months.

Ballard joked that being locked away in the draft room means there isn’t time to keep tabs on Carson Wentz. 

But much like Phillip Rivers last season, a smooth transition is underway.

“When you have a familiarity with the offense and the coaches, coaching you every day, automatically there is going to be a comfort level there,” Ballard said. “He (Wentz) understands what Frank (Reich) wants.”

“He understands the offense. They have a very close relationship. That is a good thing. That is a good thing for us.”

Who can help Wentz’ first go around in Indianapolis? 

Ballard and the Colts are zeroing in on new answers beginning next Thursday night during the NFL draft.