Should the Colts to move on from defensive coordinator Gus Bradley in the offseason?

The Indianapolis Colts have a pretty good chance of making the playoffs this year, but fans have a lot of questions about the Gus Bradley-led defense.
New Orleans Saints v Indianapolis Colts
New Orleans Saints v Indianapolis Colts / Michael Hickey/GettyImages

The Indianapolis Colts (8-6) got back to their winning ways on Saturday against the Pittsburgh Steelers. After being down early in the game 13-0, Indianapolis made somewhat of a statement by scoring 30 unanswered points to win the game 30-13. While the win was great, and kept Indy in the playoff picture, it’s hard to overlook an issue that has been lurking all season: an inconsistent defense.

Two weeks ago, when Indy lost in Week 14 to the Cincinnati Bengals, it was the fifth game that the Colts had allowed 30+ points in 2023. In fact, Indianapolis is allowing an average of 24.5 points per game to opposing teams, which is near the bottom of the league. While the defense has been riddled with injuries to key starters such as Dallis Flowers and rookie JuJu Brents, it's apparent there is a problem beyond who's playing on the field.

Defensive coordinator Gus Bradley has shown little improvement from his 2022 numbers, allowing more PPG to arguably worse teams. The Colts have faced off against multiple second-string quarterbacks and still have struggled to find an answer to defensive problems.

Should the Colts move on from Gus Bradley?

With defensive concerns on the table, fans are beginning to question whether the Colts should look to find a new defensive coordinator. From questionable play calling to big mistakes, the Indianapolis defense has looked lost at times and have struggled to shut down opposing offenses.

One positive from this year's unit is the amount of sacks. This defensive line is looking to break the franchise's single-season sack record (since moving to Indianapolis) of 46, set by 2005's team led by Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis. Indy tied the record on Saturday picking up four sacks against the Steelers.

Despite an elite group on the line, Gus Bradley has called for the second-least amount of blitzes in the NFL, despite having the highest sack % on blitzes in the league. These numbers showed in the Week 14 loss to the Bengals, where the Colts put up zero sacks on the day against one of the league's more mediocre offensive lines.

With three games left in the regular season, and a potential playoff run, defensive coordinator Gus Bradley has plenty of pressure on his shoulders to finish the year strong and secure his future with the team. A few more disappointing outings from the defense could mean Shane Steichen will be looking for a new defensive coordinator this offseason.