Indianapolis Colts Team Profile 2016 by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles
The Indianapolis Colts’ seasons turned around when they drafted QB Andrew Luck first overall in the 2012 NFL Draft. The Colts won the AFC South Division in 2013 and 2014. The Indianapolis Colts’ season also turned around when QB Andrew Luck was injured for most of last year. The Houston Texans won the AFC South Division in 2015.
2016 Team Outlook– If QB Andrew Luck comes back 100%, the Colts should be the team to beat in the AFC South in 2016. Houston will have major concerns heading into 2016 at the quarterback position and Tennessee is still evolving with their young #2 overall draft pick from the 2015 NFL Draft….QB Marcus Mariota. Jacksonville is an interesting sleeper team in 2016- talented QB Blake Bortles was the #3 quarterback in 2015, and has an outstanding wide receiver duo to throw to.
2016 Fantasy Football Outlook-
QB– The Colts were probably lucky to squeak out an 8-8 season in 2015, with grampa Hasselbeck playing under center for the Colts for half of the season. Luck battled an assortment of 2015 injuries, the most serious of which was a lacerated kidney. Luck is expected to be fully recovered and ready for the upcoming season. He is in the last year of his rookie deal, and a huge contract extension is coming. Fantasy football owners who drafted Luck ( and GB Aaron Rodgers) early in 2015, may want to wait in fantasy drafts for their quarterback, which I always preach.
RBs– RB Frank Gore was an Utter-Fantasy running back “sleeper” for 2015, but with QB Luck’s injuries, it’s hard to say if the prognostication was a bad one. Defenses were not afraid of Hasselbeck beating them through the air, so boxes were stacked against Gore. He still managed to rank as the #11 running back in the NFL last season, with almost 1000 yards rushing ( 6 rushing TDs.) Gore should return as the starter in 2016, and hopefully the Colts get a better O-Line to help him ( and Luck ) out. UPDATE: Robert Turbin signed a 1-year w/ IND and Jordan Todman signed 1-year deal.
WRs– One of the biggest “head-scratcher” of the 2015 NFL Draft was the Colts selection of 5’10” wide receiver Phillip Dorsett! For starters….Indianapolis had bigger needs for the rest of team, rather than spending their 1st round pick on a T.Y. Hilton clone at wide receiver. The Colts really needed run-stoppers, O-Line help, and a safety- 2015 IND Colt Team Profile….so what were they thinking? Even with QB Luck out half the seson in 2015, WR Hilton still racked up 1124 receiving yards with 5 touchdowns. ( down from 1345 and 7 TDs in 2015.) The WR Andre Johnson acquisition was not a successful one, and he’ll likely be released. Colts will roll with Hilton, Moncrief and Phillips in 2016.
TEs– Both tight ends Coby Fleener and Dwayne Allen are free agents this year, but Indy is expected to re-sign at least one of them. Allen is the more well-rounded tight end, but Fleener had a better year in 2015, and was a lot healthier. ( Fleener also played with QB Luck at Stanford, and he was drafted the same year as Luck- 2012.) –2016 FREE AGENTS- Update: Colts re-signed TE Dwayne Allen to a four-year, $29.4 million contract. Coby Fleener signed with New Orleans.
K– Although a free agent in 2015, the Colts are likely to re-sign place kicker Adam Vinatieri, who at 43 years old, still remains one of the league’s best kickers. Vinatieri ended 2015 as the #17 kicker in the NFL, nailing 25 of his 27 field goal attempts.
DEF– At least the Colts are consistent! In 2014, they were the #13 ranked defense in the NFL, and in 2015, they were the #13 ranked defense in the NFL. Hopefully the Colts do not spend their 1st round- 18th overall pick in 2016, on another 5’10 wide receiver. They need to get an edge rusher or corner early. Indianapolis will really be in trouble if they lose ILB Jerrell Freeman to free agency.
2015 Indianapolis Fantasy Surprises– When an offense ranks #30, like the Colts offense did in 2015, the fantasy surprises are usually bad fantasy surprises. WR Hilton probably had a better season than expected after QB Luck went out, ending as the 24th wide receiver for 2015.
2016 Free Agents that Indianapolis Needs to Address– TE Dwayne Allen (Re-signed), TE Coby Fleener, QB Matt Hasselbeck, RB Dan Herron, K Adam Vinatieri, RB Ahmad Bradshaw, ICB Greg Toler, SS Dwight Lowery, DE Billy Winn, S Colt Anderson, OG Lance Louis, LB Jerrell Freeman
2016 NFL Draft– The immediate need of Indianapolis are shoring up their weak O-Line, that must keep QB Andrew Luck healthy in 2016, and provide some holes for RB Frank Gore. The Colts can improve their defense by drafting an outside linebacker, cornerbacks, and a free safety. They do not need a 1st round wide receiver- INDIANAPOLIS’ 2015 DRAFT
Did You Know– Johnny Unitas played the role of the head coach of one of the opposing football teams in the 1999 Oliver Stone film, ‘Any Given Sunday’.
All team reports can be seen at this link- TEAM REPORTS
Team Home Page: www.colts.com