Chris Ballard discusses Colts NFL Draft plans. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Since Andrew Luck’s abrupt retirement prior to the 2019 season, the Indianapolis Colts have struggled to find an answer at quarterback.

From veteran stopgaps like Matt Ryan, Carson Wentz, or Phillip Rivers to unproven young players like Sam Ehlinger, the Colts haven’t quite found what they were looking for under center.

In drafting Florida’s Anthony Richardson with the fourth overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, the Colts looked to finally remedy this issue and find their franchise quarterback. Unfortunately for Richardson, he will have to navigate his first NFL season without 2021 First Team All-Pro running back Jonathan Taylor.

Taylor is in the midst of a holdout as he seeks a trade from Indianapolis, and will begin the season on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list. By rule, Taylor will have to sit out for at least the first four games, but without a trade, it is likely that his holdout will last even beyond that.

With all of that in mind, will it hinder Richardson’s development to not have Taylor in the backfield? General Manager Chris Ballard doesn’t think so.

In fact, Ballard appeared incredulous that the question was even asked, responding by asking if not having an elite running back stunted Andrew Luck’s growth. While the answer to that question isn’t as simple as it might seem, Luck did retire at the age of 29 largely due to the Colts not building up the team around him.

Also, the Colts traded a first-round pick to the Browns for Trent Richardson in 2013 to try and fix this exact problem.

The response is just another example of how the Colts are attempting to devalue Taylor as he seeks a trade.

Ballard’s comments had social media buzzing on Wednesday.

[Ari Meirov]