With less than a week until the start of the 2013 NFL regular season, writers and prognosticators around the world are making early predictions. Naptown’s Finest is also throwing our opinions out there, looking over the 2013 schedule for the Indianapolis Colts, and predicting what we think the results of their regular season will be. Check up on Naptown’s Finest for more predictions from our other writers.
Week 1 – vs. Oakland Raiders – Win. The Raiders have been a mess for over a decade, and 2013 may not be much different. The whole team has been gutted, and they can’t decide on a starting quarterback. Walking into Lucas Oil Stadium on opening day with so many questions and holes is a recipe for disaster for the silver and black.
Week 2 – vs. Miami Dolphins – Win. Miami may have a potent offense, with the addition of wide receiver Mike Wallace, and the ascension of running back Lamar Miller. Defensive end Cameron Wake is a monster, but it may take time for the Dolphins to gel.
Week 3 - @ San Francisco 49ers – Loss. The first road trip for the Colts is a tough one. The reigning NFC Champions will prove to be too much for the boys in blue. San Francisco head coach Jim Harbaugh knows Andrew Luck very well, after coaching Luck at Stanford.
Week 4 – @ Jacksonville Jaguars - Win. By the fourth game of the season, the Jaguars could be winless, and could be already making a change at quarterback. Maurice Jones-Drew (if healthy) will get his against the Colts, but it won’t be enough.
Week 5 – vs. Seattle Seahawks - Win. The Seahawks will be a tough match for the Colts, but the long trip across country and time zones will not serve them well. The 1pm game will feel like 10am to Seattle, and the Colts will return home to a victory.
Week 6 – @ San Diego Chargers – Win. The Colts return to the road, for their only Monday night game of the season, to play at San Diego. In recent seasons, the Colts have struggled when the travel to play the Chargers, but this isn’t the same Colts team. San Diego is a team in flux, and Philip Rivers doesn’t have much to work with, besides an aging Antonio Gates.
Week 7 – vs. Denver Broncos – Loss. Primetime on NBC Sunday night. Biggest game of the year. Peyton Manning returns home. ‘Nuff said.
Week 8 – Bye.
Week 9 – @ Houston Texans – Loss. The Colts come off a bye week, playing their third primetime game in a row. They also will be playing their fourth game out-of-six on the road. The Texans will be looking to prove a point, and their crowd will be insane.
Week 10 – vs. St. Louis Rams – Win. In a battle of former number one NFL Draft picks, Andrew Luck outshines Sam Bradford. The Colts return home, and get back on the winning track, following two consecutive losses.
Week 11 – @ Tennessee Titans – Win. In their only Thursday night game of the year, the Colts travel to Tennessee, for the first of two match-ups. The Titans did a lot in the offseason to sure-up their offensive line, but big rushing yards will not get the Titans a victory. The Colts win a close one.
Week 12 – @ Arizona Cardinals – Win. Bruce Arians left the Colts, to become head coach of the Cardinals. He brought in Carson Palmer to tag team with Larry Fitzgerald, and would love to show-up his old team. The Cardinals defense is up-and-down, and if they are down in week 12, the Colts will capitalize.
Week 13 – vs. Tennessee Titans – Win. The Colts and Titans meet for the second time in three weeks. The Colts return home, and win a division game, in blowout fashion.
Week 14 – @ Cincinnati Bengals – Loss. In a December game that could have weather complications, the third road trip out-of-four games may not go well for the Colts. This could be a game with huge AFC Playoffs seedings on the line, but the Bengals could be rolling, and the deck may be too stacked against the Colts.
Week 15 – vs. Houston Texans – Win. This game could very well decide the winner of the AFC South. Houston can’t seem to win at Indianapolis, and with so much on the line for the Colts, that trend shouldn’t change. Indianapolis gets redemption against the Texans, and takes a big step towards winning the division.
Week 16 – @ Kansas City Chiefs - Loss. By week 16, the Chiefs could either be fighting for a wildcard playoff spot, or could be totally out of the running. Still, Arrowhead Stadium is always a tough place to play, and wide receiver Dwayne Bowe always seems to kill the Colts. Bad weather, a loud crowd, and a desperate team, could result in a trap game for the Colts at Kansas City.
Week 17 – vs. Jacksonvlle Jaguars – Win. The Jags usually split the season series with the Colts, but that will not be the case this year. The Colts will be looking for a division title, and the Jaguars will be looking at the number one pick in the 2014 NFL Draft.