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Chad Kelly’s return to the NFL: Who will unlock the Swag?

It’s time.

NFL: Preseason-Indianapolis Colts at Buffalo Bills Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Chad ‘Swag’ Kelly has served his two-game suspension, and is eligible to play in the NFL. The Indianapolis Colts, who currently hold his ownership, have a decision to make...

Do they want to unlock the Swag?

The former “Mr. Irrelevant” was suspended by the NFL in May for violating the league’s personal conduct policy— after he got a little too turnt at Von Miller’s Halloween party.

According to a police report from his arrest, he toddled into the house of someone he did not know and proceeded to sit on the couch, “mumbling incoherently” aside the homeowners. Kelly, who was dressed similarly to Woody from Toy Story, only left after one of the residents chased him out with an aluminum vacuum tube.

Kelly was subsequently released by the Denver Broncos, and his case was closed in March when he plead to one misdemeanor charge of second-degree criminal trespassing. Two months later, the Indianapolis Colts signed the 25-year-old quarterback after he tried out for the team during its rookie camp.

Kelly, who is yet to throw a pass in a regular-season NFL game, can really ball. In fact, he is the best quarterback to ever step on the field for Ole Miss.

In 2015, his only full season in Oxford, Kelly led the Rebels to a 10-3 record with a road victory over eventual national champion Alabama and a decisive Sugar Bowl win over Oklahoma State. Kelly led the SEC with 4042 passing yards and 31 passing touchdowns that year.

To compare, Eli Manning’s best single season saw 3,600 passing yards and 29 passing touchdowns. Kelly also recorded a higher completion percentage, rushed for 500 more yards and ran for seven more touchdowns than Manning.

Yup, he was that good.

Kelly has only seen action in the preseason on a professional level, but turned a few heads regardless. He completed 40 of 60 passes for 466 yards with the Broncos in 2018, and went 54 of 73 for 583 yards with the Colts in 2019. He also added a pair of rushing touchdowns.

Now, with Kelly being reinstated into the league, the Colts are in an interesting predicament. When former starter Andrew Luck abruptly announced his retirement before the season began, Indianapolis had to find a capable backup for new No. 1 quarterback Jacoby Brissett. On Sept. 2, the team announced it had signed Brian Hoyer to fill that role.

From here, the team has a few choices when it comes to Kelly. The Colts can add him to the active roster alongside Brissett and Hoyer, they can release him, or they can waive him and hope he goes unclaimed so that they can sign him to the practice squad.

“That’s what [general manager] Chris (Ballard) and I had a long conversation about this morning,” Indianapolis head coach Frank Reich said in an interview on Monday. “And we’re prepared to make a decision on that; that decision will come out here in the next 24, 48 hours.”

Should the Colts choose to test waivers or release Kelly, it comes at an interesting time. Five NFL teams will start a quarterback this week who was a backup in training camp, while the New York Jets will start their third quarterback in three weeks.

Jets assistant General Manager Rex Hogan has show interest in Kelly before.

Boy oh boy, can’t you see it now?

“Swag Kelly seen leaving New York City club night before victory over Patriots”

And he’d do it too. He’s magic, remember?

ANYWAY, another team that could be looking for some quarterback voodoo is New Orleans. After losing Drew Brees for at least six weeks, Teddy Bridgewater takes the reigns for the Saints, with Swiss-army knife Taysom Hill as his backup.

As much fun and folklore there is surrounding Hill, who would you rather have in case of emergency: a less-than 3,000 yard passer at BYU, or a guy who completed 21 passes for 300 yards and four touchdowns in the Superdome once already?

Think about it, Who Dat Nation, think about it.

With Pittsburgh, Jacksonville, Carolina also among the many NFL franchises in need of help at quarterback, it’s only a matter of time before someone gives Kelly a chance. But the question looms nonetheless...

Who will unlock the Swag?