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Shane Steichen dismisses claims Colts are vying for Lamar Jackson, says they remain focused on draft

The Indianapolis Colts are in need of a quarterback, but fans of the team might not want to rush out and buy any custom Lamar Jackson threads just yet.

Based on the comments of Colts head coach Shane Steichen, Jackson doesn't appear to be in the team's current plans.

When asked about the buzz surrounding the Jackson-to-Indy possibility, Steichen appeared to pour a little cold water on the idea.

"Yeah, we're focused on the draft, and I'm going to focus on guys that are in the building right now," Steichen said on Wednesday. "That's where we're at."

Although the Colts have signed Gardner Minshew, who started multiple games down the stretch last season for Steichen and the Philadelphia Eagles, the team is expected to add a potential rookie starter at QB.

The Colts own the No. 4 overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, but staying put at that selection might mean the team could be picking its fourth-favorite QB option. The Panthers and Texans, owners of the first two picks, are believed to be heavily considering quarterbacks with those picks. The Cardinals, who sit at No. 3 overall, appear very much open to trading down -- perhaps to a QB-needy team.

But Indianapolis has been busy interviewing quarterback prospects. The Colts are wrapping up a visit on Wednesday with Florida's Anthony Richardson and are scheduled to meet with Ohio State's C.J. Stroud later this week. The Colts already worked out Kentucky's Will Levis in Lexington, and Stroud and Alabama's Bryce Young separately last week.

Steichen believes workouts and interviews can be revealing when it comes to evaluating prospects.

"I think it's both. You kind of know (who they are) from the film, but then you see them in person," Steichen said. "But really, getting to know them -- I think that's a big part of this process -- is really getting to know who that person is, their work ethic, their character, all those little different things that you want in a player."

So what is Steichen looking for in a quarterback? Interestingly, the coach who has mentored Justin Herbert and Jalen Hurts wanted to talk about the intangible qualities.

"I'm looking for good guys. I mean, that's the biggest thing," he said. "Obviously, there (are) the tangibles and the intangibles, and I'm not going to get into all the details of what I look for, but really I want good guys in this building."

In 15 days, the Colts could have another quarterback in the building. We don't yet know who it will be, but based on Steichen's comments, the odds appear much better that it will be a rookie and not an established star such as Jackson, good guy though he might be.

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