WESTFIELD, Ind. – Anthony Richardson will start the Colts' preseason opener on Saturday against the Buffalo Bills at Highmark Stadium, head coach Shane Steichen said Thursday.
Richardson will take the field with the Colts' first-team offense, and Steichen said that group will play about a quarter – though individual playing time will be determined on a case-by-case basis.
Throughout training camp, Richardson and veteran Gardner Minshew have rotated between the first- and second-team offense. After Thursday's practice, in which Richardson took first-team reps, Steichen explained his thinking for the weekend.
"I want to see where he's at," Steichen said. "Get him out there — he's been doing a nice job. Get him out there with the guys and go from there."
Steichen told Richardson he'd start in Buffalo a few minutes before Thursday's practice. Richardson said he wasn't too worried about whatever decision the coaching staff made since he knew he'd play on Saturday regardless, but is excited to get the first crack at testing what he's learned during training camp against a different opponent.
"Honestly I don't know because I haven't gone up against anybody else," Richardson said. "But I feel like I'm in a good spot and hopefully I can showcase that Saturday."
Richardson said he's looking for consistency in his operation of the offense and execution of the plays Steichen calls. And for Steichen, what he's looking for out of the 2023 No. 4 overall pick is straightforward.
"Just take care of the football," Steichen said. "Be smart with the football. Go through your reads, go through your progressions and get first downs. Simple as that."
News, notes and observations from Thursday's non-padded practice, which was moved indoors after extremely heavy rain moved through central Indiana on Wednesday:
- Right tackle Braden Smith (knee) did not practice. Steichen said he didn't have a timetable for Smith but added he shouldn't be out for long.
- Running back Deon Jackson (quad) also did not practice, and told Casey Vallier and Jeffrey Gorman on Thursday's "Training Camp Daily" podcast on the Colts Audio Network he does not expect to play Saturday in Buffalo. Fellow running back Zavier Scott (quad) also did not practice.
- Wide receiver Josh Downs had an active day, catching several passes while showcasing his shiftiness and YAC ability during 11-on-11 work.
- Richardson connected on a back-shoulder throw to wide receiver Alec Pierce in 11-on-11. Richardson said he's been working to complete on of those to Pierce throughout training camp, and the growth in their connection showed up on it today.
- Richardson also found wide receiver Michael Pittman Jr. for a touchdown in seven-on-seven.
- Cornerback Darrell Baker Jr. had a pass break-up during 11-on-11.
- Cornerback Dallis Flowers had a pass break-up on a deep ball near the end zone in 11-on-11.
View the best images from Day 9 of Colts Training Camp practice.