A short seven months ago, a turnaround season for the ages ended for the 2018-2019 Indianapolis Colts. Chris Ballard, the GM entering his second season starting the 2018 season, had brought in FAs in 2018 like Eric Ebron, had drafted a class for the ages with future All-Pro rookies Quenton Nelson and Darius Leonard headlining the class and the Colts were getting their starting quarterback, Andrew Luck, back to full health. After starting the season 1-5, the Colts would go on to win nine out of their last ten regular-season game with the season finale essentially being an extra playoff game to give themselves a wild card spot. The Colts would then win the finale against the Titans and speed into the playoffs. The Colts would go on to win the wild card game at the Texans, but then slip up and suffer a loss to the red-hot Chiefs. The offseason would begin and nothing but hope and happiness would flood the locker room and fans across the nation. The 2019 season looked like it was going be legendary, but things happen, situations change and futures take new shapes.
The 2019 offseason and draft were small and quiet but strong for the Indianapolis Colts. While having the most cap space out of all thirty two teams in the league, fans and analysts thought the Colts may make an expensive addition to the team like running back Le’veon Bell, but what did they do? Stayed quiet, like the Colts normally do and signed impactful players on both sides of the ball. On the offensive side, the acquisition of reciever Devin Funchess may seem like not much, but standing at 6 feet 4 inches and north of two-hundred and thirty pounds, he has the size and strength of that red zone target the Colts have missed for a while. As for defense, Ballard has the philosophy that one of the most important positions on the field, both ways, is a great pass rusher. The Colts have some potential great pass rushers in Kemeko Turay, Tyquan Lewis, Denico Autry, and Margus Hunt, but one thing in common among all of these players is that they are young. So, what does Ballard do? He signs former Chief Justin Houston, an experienced menace who is known for getting after the quarterback. Houston will not only get after the quarterback but will help train and mentor the younger players to help evolve them into game-impacting players. As for the draft, the Colts traded out of the first round to have their first pick be the number 34 overall pick. With that pick, the Colts drafted Rock Ya-Sin, a physically tough CB out of Temple. At Temple, he wore number 6, a single-digit number that means a lot at Temple. It shows that Ya-Sin was selected by his teammates as one of the toughest players and leaders on the team. At 6 foot and a solid 190 pounds, Ballard and the Colts hope for him to develop into a future top of the league cornerback. In the second round, the Colts would have two more choices with the 49th and 59th overall picks. With those picks, Ballard selected Ben Banogu, a defensive end out of TCU and Parris Campbell, receiver from Ohio State. Banogu will be one of those players mainly used for pass-rushing plays because of his speed off the ball. Campbell could have possibly been the steal of the draft at number fifty nine overall. The highlight receiver put up big numbers at Ohio State and will hope to continue his greatness while in the blue and white.
Looking toward the 2019-2020 season for the Indianapolis Colts it was different a week ago. The reason it is has changed so drastically is because of the retirement of QB Andrew Luck. Luck had a surprise retirement Aug. 24. The suddenness of the announcement left Colts fans asking, “What’s next?” This team may have been the best it has been since Luck took over in 2012. With a returning offensive line, a more experienced defense and a coach who knows what he is doing, the idea of a Colts trip to Miami for the Super Bowl was not that big of a stretch. But, with the sudden retirement, what should be the goals for the team this season? Since Luck has been out since late July with an ankle/calf injury, Jacoby Brissett has taken a lot of snaps with the first-team offense most of training camp. With Brissett taking over in possibly the best situation in football, can he lead a team to a good or even great year? It can be said, he is no Luck but could live up to the name. Before Luck’s retirement, I thought the Colts could make a deep playoff run. Now, I do not think Brissett can win a Super Bowl this year, but who knows? This is the NFL and anything is possible. I think an unbiased prediction for this team’s record this year is 9-7. Could they potentially squeak out a few close wins and go 11-5? Sure. Could leads be blown or mistakes be made and end up 6-10? Absolutely. With this team made by Ballard and coached by Frank Reich, I still think this Colts team can have a successful year and surprise a few people.