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Colts to start QB Sam Ehlinger for rest of season, bench Matt Ryan

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Colts coach Frank Reich said quarterback Matt Ryan (R) sustained a shoulder separation and will be benched for the rest of the season. File Photo by Joe Marino/UPI
Colts coach Frank Reich said quarterback Matt Ryan (R) sustained a shoulder separation and will be benched for the rest of the season. File Photo by Joe Marino/UPI | License Photo

Oct. 24 (UPI) -- The Indianapolis Colts will bench Matt Ryan and start Sam Ehlinger at quarterback for the rest of the 2022 season, coach Frank Reich announced Monday.

Ryan completed 33 of 44 passes for 243 yards, a touchdown and an interception in the Colts' 19-10 loss to the Tennessee Titans on Sunday in Nashville. Reich said Ryan also sustained a Grade 2 shoulder separation and will not practice this week.

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"Right now, the move is for Sam to be the starter for the rest of the season," Reich told reporters.

Ehlinger, a sixth-round pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, did not appear in any of the Colts' first seven games this season. He logged three carries for 9 yards in three games in 2021.

"It's a big step, but we think he's ready," Reich said of Ehlinger. "This guy's special."

Ryan, 37, joined the Colts through a March trade with the Atlanta Falcons. He is signed through 2023.

The 15-year veteran, four-time Pro Bowl selection and 2016 NFL MVP completed 68.4% of his throws for 2,008 yards, nine scores and nine interceptions through seven starts this season. He also fumbled a league-high 11 times.

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The Colts (3-3-1) will host the Washington Commanders (3-4) at 4:25 p.m. EDT Sunday in Indianapolis.

Third-string quarterback Nick Foles will backup Ehlinger in Week 8.

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Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes celebrates a fourth quarter touchdown against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., on Sunday. The Chiefs defeated the 49ers 44-23. Photo by Terry Schmitt/UPI | License Photo

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