It should be a much better season for the Indianapolis Colts in 2013. Yes, I said much better than the 11-5 year last season.
The Colts enter year two of the rebuilding process and have their youngsters with a year of experience under their belt. They’ve also brought in as of now 10 new members to help this team grow and reach the next level. These additions and the Colts being a year older is why I feel they will contend for the Super Bowl this season.
With the schedule released we now know the dates in which the Colts will play their opponents. With that being said, my predicted record for the Colts in ’13 is 14-2 with worst case being 13-3 or 12-4. Either way, that’s at least a one-game improvement on 2012.
Obviously injuries could play a key factor, but the Colts have positioned themselves nicely in adding depth and talent in case that should happen. They brought in Matt Hasselbeck to back up Andrew Luck in the event something unforeseen happens.
That move there was a Super Bowl move. They’re won’t be that huge drop off if Luck is out for any period of time. Hasselbeck is a veteran quarterback that has Super Bowl experience.
Going down the schedule, I believe the Colts will be undefeated at home in Lucas Oil Stadium. They played so well there last year in going 7-1, and was really one fluke play from being 8-0. They have some marquee games at home which helps as the home crowd is a huge advantage in the friendly confines of LOS.
The Denver Broncos game on October 20 will be emotional as Peyton Manning returns, but the new look Colts defense is built to get stops and takeaways. With the emotion in the building that night, I firmly believe the Colts win that game.
The next hardest game is the Sunday night game on October 6 against the Seattle Seahawks. It’s going to be hyped as Russell Wilson vs. Luck. Again, the Seahawks will pose the Colts troubles with their stout defense, but the Colts defense will keep them in this game. In even-matched games, I side with the home team especially when it’s a west coast team playing the early game out East.
The other home game that could cause them troubles is the divisional game with the Houston Texans. This game could decide the division, but the Colts are undefeated at home against Houston. I think that streak continues and could be the determining factor in the AFC South division race.
The losses will come on the road. They have a trip at Houston which will be close, but may result in a loss.
The only other loss I see is the Week 3 trip at the San Francisco 49ers on September 22. The game is hyped as Luck, Coby Fleener and new offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton go back to the Bay Area to take on their former college head coach Jim Harbaugh. The 49ers are tough at home and could give the Colts their second loss.
Other than that, the only other game they could drop on the road would be at the Cincinnati Bengals as they always play the Colts tough. Andy Dalton and A.J. Green could be huge at home.