With the first official game being played tomorrow, the NFL regular season is back. Now we look ahead to the Colts season and give a prediction. What record will they end up with at season’s end?
The Colts are hopeful this season. They added a lot of young talent in the draft and hope that they can take a step forward. They finished with the third worst record in the league last year, so they definitely have room for improvement. But how will they fare this season?
First, let’s look at who they’ve added. They drafted one of the best offensive line prospects in the last ten years in Quenton Nelson. They added a starter at middle linebacker through the draft as well in Darius Leonard. But the biggest addition is getting Andrew Luck back from injury.
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Luck will be the key to the Colts’ success this season. We’ve seen evidence of him carrying bad rosters to great heights, most notably the 2014 AFC Championship game. He will need to do more of the same this season if the Colts want to have success.
The offensive line is still a concern. They haven’t been able to stay healthy this offseason, which could lead to Luck getting hit in the regular season. Luck staying healthy is the number one priority for this team, so the offensive line needs to play well together.
On defense, the unit doesn’t look good. They lost their best corner in free agency, and just cut one of their only playmakers in John Simon. They do have a future star in Leonard, but the unit hasn’t looked consistent in preseason. Getting Malik Hooker back should help though.
Looking at the Colts’ schedule it looks bearable. Playing the NFC East doesn’t give them any favors, but the rest of the schedule seems manageable. A lot of it hinges on how good the rest of the AFC South ends up being.
With all of that being considered, the Colts should be better this year. With Luck back, the offense should be more explosive than it was a year ago. This is the healthiest he has been in three years. He’s good enough to win games by himself, and he should do that this year. He should be able to lead the team to a .500 record or slightly better, and that should be good enough to be in the hunt for a wild card spot.
A lot of this hinges on how well the coaching staff meshes with the players and how well the team can stay healthy. If those things happen, they could even surpass this projection.