After a roundabout journey Jacob Eason has finally fulfilled his dream of being drafted into the NFL after the Indianapolis Colts took him with the 122nd overall pick in the 4th round of the 2020 draft.
There had been a lot of speculation that Eason could end up headed to the Colts and it eventually happened albeit a round or two later than most originally expected. The Colts signed veteran QB Phillip Rivers this offseason to a one year deal to take over as their starter for this season. QB Jacoby Brissett earned a two year contract after the Colts traded for him from the Patriots but his contract also expires after this year and the acquisition of Rivers and now Eason suggests they don’t have him in their long-term plans.
It wouldn’t be a surprise to see the Colts trade Brissett to be the backup elsewhere before the start of the season. If they don’t then Eason is most likely the 3rd team QB on the depth chart right off the bat. However, with no other quarterback under contract past this season it appears that Eason will be given every chance to win the job in 2021 after learning on the bench for a season.
Eason was a consensus 5-star recruit coming out of high school in Lake Stevens, WA and chose to head to the SEC and Georgia. He started as a true freshman but lost the job to Jake Fromm after suffering an opening game injury as a sophomore and transferred back home to Washington. After a year sitting out due to transfer rules Eason took over as a junior and put up good but not mind blowing stats. He passed for 3,123 yards and 23 touchdowns in his only season in Seattle.
Early in the season most draft analysts had Eason pegged as a 1st round pick due to his natural arm talent but the Husky offense faltered down the stretch and Eason’s draft stock went along with it. The natural tools though were too enticing to completely pass up and most draftniks predicted Eason would be chosen in either the 2nd or 3rd round.
Unfortunately, Eason dropped even further than that and his decision to declare early for the draft will certainly be viewed as a miscalculation by most. It’s possible that a year in a new offense with no spring practice to adjust wouldn’t have improved his stock at all but Eason’s inability to identify defenses fell apart when under intense scrutiny from general managers as well as reports that he interviewed poorly at the combine.
However, if Eason works hard and studies under one of the best quarterbacks of the last two decades in Phillip Rivers he will have a spot to be a starter for the Colts a year from now.
Best of luck to Jacob in the NFL!