INDIANAPOLIS — All eyes are now on the future for the Indianapolis Colts after a much more disappointing season than expected.
The final game of the season for the Colts was much like the year had been: high expectations quickly dashed in what seems to be absurd circumstances.
”Just such a typical ending to this year,” said Tim Sizemore, a Colts fan walking around Monument Circle.
The Houston Texans pulled off a game-winning touchdown on 4th and 20, followed by a 2-point conversion to put the Colts behind. Whether it is losing to the Texans or the most surprising coaching hire possibly ever, this season has been a roller coaster for fans.
”Just glad it’s over. Kind of painful to watch the last four or five weeks,” said Colts fan Tom McKneight.
The 4-12-1 Colts had high expectations in the beginning with a MVP candidate running back, former MVP quarterback, strong offensive line and a stout defense. Colts fan Cory Miller had above average expectations.
“Winning the division or at least being up there, better than four wins,” Miller said.
Things crumbled quickly, but it’d be tough to tell that if you looked in the crowd during the games. Blue Crew founder Randy Collins called the fans unbelievable.
”If you were at the game yesterday, even the announcers couldn’t believe the audience was there, the fans were there,” Collins said.
Now these loyal fans have a lot of questions this offseason, like who the leading man will be next year.
“I don’t think Saturday is the man,” Sizemore said. “I love him being apart of the organization, but I don’t think he’s the guy to take over and lead it in a new direction.”
There are all sorts of ideas for a possible replacement.
”Peyton Manning would be option number one,” said McKneight.
Collins said Jim Harbaugh, current Michigan Wolverines head football coach, would be a good option, too.
Whoever the coach is, they’ll have a high draft pick to work with. The abysmal record for the Horsehsoe does give the team the fourth overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. Fans we talked to said they’re hoping the Colts draft a franchise QB.
”I would like to see them develop someone new around the team,” said Colts fan Elizabeth Kuhn.
Since Andrew Luck retired abruptly in 2019, the Colts have shifted from veteran quarterback to veteran quarterback, most recently Matt Ryan. Fans said it’s time for something new.
”Been there, done that, man,” Collins said. “I think we’ve got to go with a young quarterback and put some talent around him.”
The next date to look forward to for Colts fans is April 27 to see who Irsay, Ballard and the crew pick with that fourth-overall pick.