The Indianapolis Colts are saying all the right things this week as they prepare for their Week 1 matchup with the Oakland Raiders. It’s the first time the Colts have hosted a game in Week 1 since a 14-12 victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2009.
That, coincidentally enough, is the only win in Week 1 for the Colts since 2008.
Indianapolis lost to the Houston Texans on the road in 2010 and 2011, getting blown out in both contests, and backed it up with another blow out at the hands of the Chicago Bears in Soldier Field last season.
That is likely to change Sunday if the Colts want to backup the surprising season in 2012 with another playoff appearance. The Raiders are coming off of a 4-12 season last year and don’t look to be any better. In fact, most experts have them rivaling the Jaguars for the top pick in next year’s draft.
Oakland doesn’t have many positions solidified, especially their quarterback spot. They also don’t have many receiving weapons. They will rely heavily on running back Darren McFadden, but he’s been very unproductive over the past two years.
This bodes very well for the Colts, who signed 10 guys during the offseason and made a couple of trades to better this team and help in positions that were weak in 2012. This should be a much better team than the 11-win club last year and should honestly contend for a Super Bowl berth this year.
That starts with a Week 1 victory over the Raiders. They can’t lose to a rebuilding team at home. Indianapolis has to defend their home field like they did last year in going 7-1. Dropping an early game to a bad franchise isn’t good.
Colts fans have to hope this recent losing trend in Week 1 ends this week.
Eric Smith is the Colts Beat Writer for Rant Sports. He’s covered the team the last four years and is recognized as an accredited member of the media by the Colts. Follow him on Twitter @ericsportsguru.