The Indianapolis Colts’ search for a backup quarterback in the aftermath of Andrew Luck’s retirement and Jacoby Brissett’s promotion to first-string duties has finally ended, as the team announced on Monday that they had signed journeyman free agent Brian Hoyer to a contract.
In a news release published on the Colts‘ official website, the organization confirmed that Hoyer will be backing up Brissett when Indianapolis visits the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday as part of the 2019 NFL season’s Week 1 matchups. No contract details were mentioned, but The Indianapolis Star wrote that per an unnamed source, the 33-year-old signal-caller signed a three-year, $12 million contract with $9 million guaranteed.
Despite going undrafted out of Michigan State, Hoyer has played for 10 seasons in his NFL career and has suited up for a total of six teams, per Pro Football Reference. In 65 NFL games, Hoyer has posted a 16-21 record as a starting quarterback and has career totals of 48 touchdown passes, 30 interceptions, 9,902 passing yards, and an 83.2 QB rating. He was most prominently utilized by his hometown Cleveland Browns, as he started 13 out of 14 games for the team in 2014, throwing for 12 touchdowns, 13 interceptions, and 3,326 passing yards.
Interestingly, both Hoyer and Brissett have the shared experience of backing up Tom Brady on the New England Patriots, though their stints with the team never overlapped with each other, per Yahoo Sports.
“Brian has the toughness and accuracy we look for in a quarterback and he’s been in offensive systems that are similar to ours,” read a statement from Colts head coach Frank Reich. “He has a tremendous amount of experience and is a proven leader. Brian’s knowledge will be a valuable resource in supporting Jacoby and the team on and off the field. We’re excited to have him here.”
Brian Hoyer has signed with Indianapolis, with multiple reports calling it a three-year, $12 million deal with $9 million guaranteed.https://t.co/eQSWIwb4Bc
— SNF on NBC (@SNFonNBC) September 2, 2019
As further explained on the Colts’ news release, Hoyer’s arrival in Indianapolis fills an “immediate” need for the Colts, as the team would have had just one other quarterback aside from Brissett ready for their Week 1 game against the Chargers. Chad Kelly will be serving a suspension during the first two weeks of the regular season, while Phillip Walker was waived on Saturday and then re-signed on Sunday to the Colts’ practice squad.
With Hoyer now joining Brissett and Kelly in the Colts’ quarterback rotation, the team will reportedly take the next few weeks to determine whether the veteran signal-caller is Indianapolis’ “long-term answer” as a second-stringer. If he fails to impress, the team might consider Kelly as Brissett’s primary backup once he returns from his suspension. The possibility of carrying three active quarterbacks in the regular season instead of the usual two was also mentioned as a potential option for Indianapolis.