Colts 2018 indianapolis colts Fantasy Preview

For the second time in three years, quarterback Andrew Luck was burdened by injuries. A torn labrum in his throwing shoulder cost Luck his entire 2017 season after playing just seven games two years prior. The Colts traded wideout Phillip Dorsett to the Patriots for Jacoby Brissett before the season because Scott Tolzien is, well, Scott Tolzien. Brissett relieved Tolzien (three turnovers) at halftime of Week 1 and started for the remainder of the season. The second-year quarterback totaled 3,098 passing yards and 17 total touchdowns (QB20 for the season). The ageless Frank Gore completed his 12th consecutive season with at least 200 carries and 1,200 all-purpose yards to lead Indianapolis' running back group. Gore, at age 34, was the RB18, a reliable RB2 or flex play in most leagues. Fourth-round pick Marlon Mack was the No. 2 back, finishing with 168 fewer carries than Gore but with the same number of total touchdowns (four). Colts receivers struggled without Luck, too. The normally-explosive T.Y. Hilton entered last summer as a top-10 wideout, according to four of our five fantasy experts. Granted, Luck's health was still a question mark at that point, but Hilton caught just 57 passes for 966 yards -- both the lowest since his rookie year. Second- and third-string receivers Donte Moncrief and Chester Rogers both had fewer than 30 catches and under 400 receiving yards, offering minimal fantasy value. The Colts' second-most valuable pass catcher turned out to be tight end Jack Doyle, who led the team with 80 receptions. It was a much-needed career season for Doyle after the Colts traded Dwayne Allen to New England in the off-season. An overall disappointing year across the board in Indy all traced back to Luck's shoulder.

10

T.Y.
Hilton

WR - Colts

FACT: In the Colts' four wins last season, Hilton averaged 23.6 yards per reception and scored three touchdowns. Hilton only averaged 12.8 yards per reception for one touchdown in the Colts' 12 losses.
Offseason Moves

Much like their division rivals down in Houston, the Colts are hoping to get their franchise quarterback healthy in 2018. It's felt like an eternity since we've seen Andrew Luck on the playing field, but he appears to be making positive gains. Jacoby Brissett, now with a year of starting quarterback experience, is ready as the backup should Luck face any complications. Frank Gore relocated to Miami and the Colts appear ready to roll with Marlon Mack as their lead back. Mack was fine last year as Gore's backup (3.8 yards per carry, 10.7 yards per reception), but rookies Nyheim Hines and Jordan Wilkins could challenge for snaps. No. 2 wideout Donte Moncrief signed with Jacksonville and Chester Rogers will likely move up the depth chart. The Colts drafted Deon Cain in the sixth round, but he is still fourth in the pecking order behind Rogers and off-season signing Ryan Grant. Doyle returns as the top tight end, but Indy signed former first-round pick Eric Ebron from Detroit and he could command some looks.

Sleepers & Busts

Jack Doyle is still something of a sleeper candidate, despite having a Pro Bowl season last year and the Colts bringing in Eric Ebron. Several of our fantasy experts are keeping Doyle outside their top-10 fantasy tight ends, so we're calling him a sleeper. Doyle racked up a team-leading 80 catches last year with Jacoby Brissett at quarterback. Brissett filled in admirably, but Andrew Luck is a far superior player. Having him back will help all of the Colts pass catchers, but Doyle's reliability -- he had 10 games with at least four receptions -- will catapult him to the TE1 slot over Ebron. He could be a starter in most fantasy leagues this season.

Multiple Colts running backs have potential fantasy value. Marlon Mack is the starter, but don't count on him to be as good -- or as much of a workhorse -- as Gore was last year. The Colts have been working to improve their offensive line since Luck was drafted in 2012. Last season, they allowed a league-high 56 sacks. Indy added Quenton Nelson with the sixth pick in the draft and signed Matt Slauson to address the need, but we still won't trust it until we see it in action. Mack is also going to be facing threats from rookies Nyheim Hines and Jordan Wilkins. Hines showed out as a versatile weapon in mini-camp and could steal touches from Mack. The Colts backfield situation is one to monitor throughout training camp and the preseason -- Mack is not a sure-thing.

Fantasy Depth Chart
POSFIRSTSECONDTHIRDOTHER
QB Andrew Luck Jacoby Brissett
RB Marlon Mack Nyheim Hines Jordan Wilkins Robert Turbin
WR T.Y. Hilton Chester Rogers Ryan Grant Deon Cain
TE Jack Doyle Eric Ebron
K Adam Vinatieri