Considering the Colts: Is the season finally over?

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After falling to Tampa Bay, all playoff hopes are virtually gone. The only hope is to win out and get a lot of help from other teams. The unfortunate thing for the Colts is that they face a top-tier NFC team in the New Orleans Saints. At the Superdome. On Monday Night. 

I would like to think the Colts can pull off another miraculous win like they did against the Chiefs earlier in the season, but the injuries have become too much for Indianapolis to overcome. Wide receiver Parris Campbell was put on injured reserve one week after making his return from hand surgery. Kicker Adam Vinatieri was put on injured reserve this week as well to have knee surgery.

What’s interesting to me is why the Colts and Vinatieri waited so long to decide that Vinatieri should have surgery. There were rumblings of a potential injury to Vinatieri all season long. Rookie kicker Chase McLaughlan had been bouncing around the league all season long before he landed with Colts and performed well with Vinatieri not able to suit up last week.

Vinatieri is thinking about returning for another season, which leaves the Colts with a decision to make. Keep Vinatieri and allow him to attempt a “comeback revenge” season or release him and finally move on. If the Colts want to compete next year and turn some of those close losses into wins, I think Vinatieri should be released and look for a long-time solution.

As for the receiving corps, the Colts have lost T.Y. Hilton for several weeks due to a calf injury, Parris Campbell for many weeks and now the rest of the season due to a hamstring and hand injury and now a fractured foot. Devin Funchess was also lost for the season after the first game of the season. 

The injuries and lack of depth of the receiver position led to lack of big plays that lead to wins. I think Chris Ballard and Frank Reich will try to address the receiver issue through free agency and the draft. A.J. Green will be a free agent this upcoming offseason. Despite his injuries, I think Green would fit nicely in the offense and give Brissett a big target that he can go to in key situations. As far as the wide receiver depth in the draft, LSU product Justin Jefferson or Clemson standout Tee Higgins would be great additions to the corps. LSU and Clemson have a history of producing great wideouts that succeed in the NFL, and I would expect nothing else from either one of those players.

One thing anyone can count on is that the Colts will not throw in the towel the rest of the season. Hilton is working to get back on the field and help the team where he can. Reich will have his guys to play, but playing in New Orleans is not an easy task at all. The Colts will have to play a perfect game on all three facets of the game if they want to win on Monday.

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