The Indianapolis Colts have to improve their offensive line this offseason but that’s not going to be a simple task to accomplish.
The offensive line was the most underwhelming part of the Indianapolis Colts in 2022. The team entered this past season with high expectations but finished the year 4-12-1 and had one of the worst offenses in the league. The majority of Indy’s problems stemmed from the offensive line not being able to run block or pass block. So naturally, one of Indy’s top priorities this offseason should be to improve the offensive line.
Unfortunately for the Colts, that’s going to be much easier said than done. While it would be great for Indy to just aggressively attack this offseason by drafting, signing, and trading for top linemen, Indianapolis will actually be somewhat limited in its ability to upgrade. The Colts do have the No. 4 pick in the draft but will they really select a lineman like Peter Skoronski over a quarterback? Probably not. Will Indy go and find elite linemen in free agency or on the trade market and acquire them? That seems unlikely as well, especially considering Indy’s current offensive line.
Indy’s current projected offensive line is Bernhard Raimann at left tackle, who’ll be entering his second season, Quenton Nelson at left guard, who’ll be entering the first season of a four-year, record-setting extension, Ryan Kelly at center, entering the third year of his four-year deal, Will Fries at right guard, and Braden Smith at right tackle, who’ll be in the second year of a four-year extension.
From a business perspective, the only position that’s up for grabs is the right guard spot. While everyone struggled last season, Indianapolis has so much money tied up in the offensive line that the front office is probably just hoping that these guys can rebound. That’s also probably all the front office is going to do as well.
Colts offensive line probably won’t receive many upgrades
Indianapolis actually replacing one of their higher-paid offensive linemen doesn’t seem like something Chris Ballard will do. If he actually trades or cuts one of these guys, it’s because Indy has a clear-cut plan on how they’ll be filling the spot with someone better. Until that arises, the Colts will simply be forcing the offensive line to look within and find a way to get better.
Whether it’s demanding that guys improve or some unforeseen foolproof plan to makeover the line, Indianapolis has to get better up front this offseason. With a rookie quarterback being added to the equation, the Colts can’t afford to have a bad offensive line. If they do, they’ll likely have another underwhelming season and will probably ruin a young, talented quarterback.