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Indianapolis Colts 2017 NFL Offseason Needs and Preview

Indianapolis Colts 2017 NFL Offseason Needs and Preview

2017 Indianapolis Colts Offseason Preview

NFL News and Previews

2016 Season Recap

The Colts, by far, were the most inconsistent team in the NFL in 2016. Their 8-8 record says it all, but the way they got to it just screams it loudly. For fourteen straight weeks (Week 3 to Week 17), Indy alternated wins and losses. No two-game losing or winning streaks, the Ws and Ls simply came and went alternately.

It’s not Andrew Luck and the offense’s fault, though. The QB threw for 4,240 yards (282.7 YPG, 31-13 TD-INT ratio), while his primary receiver, TY Hilton, had a league-leading 1,448 receiving yards. The 33-year-old Frank Gore, meanwhile, had another 1,000-plus yard season (the ninth in his 12-year career).

Just like last year, the defense is mostly the problem. Through ranking 27th in defending the pass (262.5 passing YPG) and 25th in defending the run (120.3 rushing YPG), the Colts were dead-last in total yards allowed,

Additionally, 13 of their 16 opponents on the year either had 300 or more passing yards or 116 or more rushing yards.

Top Free Agency Needs

Plenty of key guys on the roster, particularly on defense, will be unrestricted free agents, but the three guys they may want to prioritize are LB Erik Walden (team-leading 11 sacks), CB Darius Butler (15 INTs in five seasons with Indy), and TE Jack Doyle (584 yards, five TDs).

Since linebacker is a big need of the team, especially with longtime Colt Robert Mathis retiring, they may want to target LBs in free agency. The guys they realistically have a chance on are Lawrence Timmons, Nick Perry, Barkevious Mingo, and Melvin Ingram.

The O-Line could also use some upgrade. Among the best linemen that are bound to be available are OG Ronald Leary, OG Kevin Zeitler, OG Chance Warmack, RT Gosder Cherilus, and LT Riley Reiff.

Top Draft Needs

Linebacker — This is arguably their number one priority in the draft. The key pieces of their linebacking corps – Mathis, Walden, Cole, and Ayers – are either retiring or entering free agency. However, if good d-linemen such as Derek Barnett or Malik McDowell are available in the 14th pick, they might pick a pass rusher.

Running Back — Outside of Gore, who’s in his dog years as a back (33 y.o.), they have no real threat in the running game. It might be good to use the 14th pick to get Dalvin Cook or Leonard Fournette, if they don’t elect for a LB or DL.

Offensive Line — The 44 sacks that the O-Line allowed are the most in the AFC South, and fifth-most in the league.

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Written by JE

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