Week by Week Analysis of Colts NFL Total Season Wins

Nikki Adams

Sunday, August 17, 2014 6:16 AM GMT

Sunday, Aug. 17, 2014 6:16 AM GMT

Indianapolis Colts are expected to take the AFC South by the scruff of its neck this season, which would mark a second straight season as division champions. Here’s a look at their NFL schedule complete with early projections and picks. 

Are the Colts Overrated?
The Colts finished the 2013-2014 season atop the AFC South pile on the back of an 11-5-0mark on the season built largely on a 6-0-0 record in divisional clashes. When all three AFC South opponents went under .500, the obvious question is how good are the Colts really? Does their 4-4 record last season against .500 (or higher) teams give us a better sense of their real merit?

The line chalks at 9.5 wins, the bulk of which should come against their divisional rivals as it did last season. Tennessee Titans, Houston Texans and Jacksonville Jaguars are all in some phase of redevelopment, making it possible for the Colts to repeat the perfect 6-0 record. This means they need a minimum of four wins out of their remaining ten games to cross the line bookies have set. Judging by the NFL schedule they’ve been dealt, it’s doable.

 

Game-by-Game

Week 1 @ Denver
Last season’s clash with the Broncos in Indianapolis was a bittersweet affair, for Colts fans and Peyton Manning. Andrew Luck pulled off the 39-33 win, effectively outdoing his predecessor Manning and, in turn, handing Denver their first loss of the season. This time, they clash in Denver. That’s advantage Manning and Broncos. Luck would have to play the game of his life to beat the Broncos at home.
NFL Pick: Loss

 

Week 2 vs. Philadelphia
Nick Foles (or Jets cast off Mark Sanchez) descend on Indianapolis for a primetime date that has the potential to be explosive on the offensive side of the ball. This game could go either way, especially if Foles emulates his eye-popping form of 2013. Colts should win, but Eagles could shock as well. Bit of a tossup, but we’ll give it the Colts with home advantage. 
NFL Pick: Win

 

Week 3 @ Jacksonville
The Colts face a divisional rival that is in massive redevelopment following an abysmal 4-12 season. Jaguars have improved in the offseason but they are still a long way away from being competitive, surely, you’d think.
NFL Pick: Win

 

Week 4 vs. Tennessee
It’s a second straight divisional clash in as many weeks, chance for the Colts to put together a nice winning streak. Jake Locker and an iffy secondary should be no trouble for Andrew Luck and company to outclass. 
NFL Pick: Win

 

Week 5 vs. Baltimore
At first glance, this game looks like a winnable game for the Colts. Better yet, it’s the sort of game Colts want to win in order to underscore their Super Bowl credentials. That said Joe Flacco and a retooled offense under the guidance of Gary Kubiak could potentially give Andrew Luck and the Colts a lot to think about, more than most NFL bettors would initially think.
NFL Pick: Loss

 

Week 6 @ Houston
Houston Texans were the worst outfit in the NFL last season, finishing at the bottom of the AFC South and league standings with a 2-14 record. While nobody expects a repeat of that forgettable season, few would believe they’re going to be whole lot better. Colts should win handily on the road.
NFL Pick: Win

 

Week 7 vs. Cincinnati
Andy Dalton and the Bengals romped the Colts 42-28 at home in week 14 (December 8). It was an entirely one-sided affair. This season, the Colts will have home advantage and revenge on their minds. It wouldn’t do however to underestimate the Bengals. The team is essentially the same. While Luck can hang with Dalton, the Colts defense will have their hands full.
NFL Pick: Loss

 

Week 8 @ Pittsburgh
The Steelers represent a second straight AFC North opponent in as many weeks. Andrew Luck and Company will be sorely tested at Heinz Field. The Steelers have a good record at home, Ben Roethlisberger is an experienced quarterback and the Steelers defense ranked 13th in total defense last season. This could be a forgettable trip for the Colts.
NFL Pick: Loss

 

Week 9 @ New York Giants
The New York Giants look to bounce back from a disappointing season. They were aggressive in the offseason, ushering wholesale changes from top to bottom in order to become better on both sides of the ball. Ultimately, this could come down to a shootout between Luck and Manning.

NFL Pick: Loss

 

Week 10 Bye

 

Week 11 vs. New England
Andrew Luck beat Peyton Manning and the Broncos last season in Indianapolis. This season he’s set to duel against another future Hall of Famer in Tom Brady. Luck would love this notch on his belt too, so expect him to rise to the occasion. If the Patriots are going to suffer defeat, it’s likelier to come on the road than at home. Then again Brady is in a league of his own.
NFL Pick: Loss

 

Week 12 vs. Jacksonville
Look to Colts to sweep this series at home against the Jaguars.
NFL Pick: Win

 

Week 13 vs. Washington
This clash boils down to the matchup between the top two picks: Luck and RGIII. How they stack up against each other. Look for Luck to silence the doubters and critics, including RGIII.
NFL Pick: Win

 

Week 14 @ Cleveland
The Cleveland Browns are another team that is committed to redevelopment and retooling. It remains to be seen how well they adjust to the new season and whether Johnny “Football” Manziel is the starting quarterback in this game. Regardless, Luck and the Colts have too much class and experience for the Browns to handle. 
NFL Pick: Win

 

Week 15 vs. Houston
The Colts look to wrap up the divisional rivalry with a home win at the expense of a Houston Texans that could be struggling some this season.

NFL Pick: Win

 

Week 16 @ Dallas
There are many question marks preceding the Dallas Cowboys into the season, namely the health and fitness of Tony Romo and the state of their defense. Let’s not forget they are prone to late season collapses, a well-known narrative in football betting circles. If Luck lights up, the Colts could take the road win.
NFL Pick: Win

 

Week 17 @ Tennessee
Last season, the Colts swept all their divisional series to finish with a perfect record in the AFC South. If they are in a similar position here, with a last win to complete the set, it’s hard to imagine a questionable Titans outfit stopping them.  What’s more, home field advantage in the playoffs could be on the line, which is another motivating factor to consider.
NFL Pick: Win

 

NFL Betting Verdict
Indianapolis Colts don’t have an easy schedule, but neither do they have a tough one. The AFC South is a bit of a gimmick, giving them no excuse not to win all six divisional games, which also means that number is the lowest reasonable regular wins tally most NFL bettors would allow. Taking four or more wins out of the remaining games should be possible. We have the Colts headed towards a 10-6 record this season, which would put them 'over' the 9.5 chalk line matched at +100 at Bet365. It’s worth noting, bookies are of a different mind, favouring the 'under' at -130. You decide on your NFL picks

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