Jacoby Brissett takes a backseat to Philip Rivers in Indianapolis this season after the Colts decided importing the veteran could be the missing piece to a playoff-caliber roster.
Coach Frank Reich said Monday that Brissett is taking the demotion in stride.
"Just like you guys know he would," Reich said when asked how the QB is handling the situation. "I mean, he's a pro. He wants to do what's right for the team. And he knows. He and I have had multiple conversations about that. Jacoby doesn't need me to tell him what to do. He knows what to do. I'm his friend and I'm his coach, and I've been in his position to some degree. Do I try to lend an encouraging voice every now and then? Yeah, but he's doing it the right way. We need him to be who he is this year for us to get where we want to go. Whether that means he ends up playing some games or playing a number of plays or even if he's just there to support Philip and this team, Jacoby will be a big part of our success."
Reich noted that he does "think it was hard" for Brissett to watch Rivers sign to be the starter.
"Jacoby's been a complete pro," the coach said. "Those two, it's like they've been together for a while. They're both from N.C. State. Both went to N.C. State, I don't know, they both play quarterback, there's a brotherhood between quarterbacks."
Rivers hasn't missed a start due to injury in his career after taking over the gig full-time in 2006. His consecutive starts streak of 235, including playoffs, ranks second all-time behind Brett Favre's 321. Unless the 38-year-old ends up catching the injury bug for the first time in his career, Brissett likely isn't seeing the field much.
Entering the last year of his contract in Indy, it isn't an ideal time for the fifth-year pro to ride the pine. Given his pedigree and stellar play at times as a starter, Brissett should have a lengthy career as a backup, at the very least. Next offseason, he could look to land in a spot with a better chance to compete for a starting gig. It's even possible that's in Indy, where the coaching staff still like him as a player, if the dalliance with Rivers doesn't last long.