The Indianapolis Colts franchise has a rich history dating back to when they moved from Baltimore to Indiana to become the Colts.
The franchise itself was founded in 1953 in the American Football League but then relocated to Indianapolis in 1984. Since the move, the Colts have made the playoffs 16 times, won a pair of conference championships and won Super Bowl XLI.
One of the most exciting parts of watching the Colts and NFL football is betting on the game. If you’re new to sports betting in Indiana, or betting on the Colts, here’s an introduction to NFL betting to get you on the right track.
Now that sports betting is legal in Indiana, there are several places where you can bet on sports and, more specifically, the Colts.
Retail sportsbooks in Indiana opened in September. Following close behind were the first Indiana online sportsbooks that went live one month later.
The surprise retirement of quarterback Andrew Luck took fans by surprise. Before his retirement, Indiana sportsbooks were betting on the Colts to make it to the Super Bowl. Now, not so much.
Here’s a look at the path they’ll have to take to get there, at least through the regular season. The Colts bye week this year was Week 6.
|1||Sunday, Sept. 8||@ Los Angeles Charges||4:05 p.m.||CBS|
|2||Sunday, Sept. 15||@ Tennessee Titans||1:00 p.m.||CBS|
|3||Sunday, Sept. 22||Atlanta Falcons||1:00 p.m.||CBS|
|4||Sunday, Sept. 29||Oakland Raiders||1:00 p.m.||CBS|
|5||Sunday, Oct. 5||@ Kansas City Chiefs||8:20 p.m.||NBC|
|7||Sunday, Oct. 20||Houston Texans||1:00 p.m.||CBS|
|8||Sunday, Oct. 27||Denver Broncos||4:25 p.m.||CBS|
|9||Sunday, Nov. 3||@ Pittsburgh Steelers||1:00 p.m.||CBS|
|10||Sunday, Nov. 10||Miami Dolphins||4:05 p.m.||CBS|
|11||Sunday, Nov. 17||Jacksonville Jaguars||1:00 p.m.||CBS|
|12||Thursday, Nov. 21||@ Houston Texans||8:20 p.m.||Fox NFL Ne|
|13||Sunday, Dec. 1||Tennessee Titans||1:00 p.m.||CBS|
|14||Sunday, Dec. 8||@ Tampa Bay Buccaneers||1:00 p.m.||CBS|
|15||Monday, Dec. 16||@ New Orleans Saints||8:15 p.m.||ESPN|
|16||Sunday, Dec. 22||Carolina Panthers||1:00 p.m.||Fox|
|17||Sunday, Dec. 29||@ Jacksonville Jaguars||1:00 p.m.||CBS|
For the 2018 season, Indianapolis finished up with an overall record of 10-6 and secured a wild card berth in the AFC. The season started poorly as the team was just 1-5 after Week 6, but things turned around quickly.
The Colts won nine of their final 10 games and ripped off five- and four-game winning streaks while doing so. In the postseason, they picked up a road win over the Texans in the wild-card round but fell to the Chiefs in the divisional playoffs.
Here’s how the Colts performed on several key handicapping metrics for the season as a whole.
Indianapolis scored an average of 27.1 points per game during the 2018 regular season, which ranked fifth in the NFL. The defense allowed an average of 21.5 points per contest, which ranked 10th.
For two postseason games, the team scored a total of 34 points and allowed 38.
Current futures odds for the Colts to win the Super Bowl at DraftKings: +4000
This meeting on “Sunday Night Football” was a rematch from last year’s playoffs where the Kansas City Chiefs picked up a convincing win over the Colts.
This year, the tables turned and the Colts nailed down their most impressive win of the season. Indianapolis held MVP candidate Patrick Mahomes in check, winning 19-13. Marlon Mack rushed for 132 yards and Adam Vinatieri tucked four field goals through the uprights in Kansas City’s first loss of the season.
In a battle of AFC South rivals, the Houston Texans eked out a 20-17 Week 12 win over Indianapolis. Jacoby Brissett had a quiet game in an otherwise stellar 2019 campaign, passing for just 129 yards. Deshaun Watson was too much for the Colts in this one, as the former Heisman Trophy winner passed for 298 yards and a pair of touchdowns. The Colts went 1-1 against the Texans in 2019 regular season games.
Ryan Tannehill‘s renaissance season continued at the Colts’ expense, as the Tennessee Titans defeated the Colts 31-17 at Lucas Oil Stadium. The Colts had no answer for Titans running back Derrick Henry, who rushed for 149 yards and a touchdown. At one point leading the Titans 17-7, Week 13’s loss was a gut punch for the Colts.
This is one of the final Monday Night Football games of the year. The interest will be ratcheted up based on that alone, but this is also a meeting of two squads that could be in the thick of the playoff hunt. New Orleans is a notoriously tough environment to play in, so the Colts will more than have their hands full with one of the league’s top teams.
The Colts wrap up the regular season with a road date versus a division rival. Since the AFC South appears to be anyone’s race in 2019, there’s a possibility the division won’t be decided until the final day of the season. The Jaguars are a tough defensive team that can make life miserable for opponents, so the Colts will have their work cut out to close the year on a high note.
The Indianapolis Colts play in the AFC South division. The other three teams in the division are the Houston Texans, Jacksonville Jaguars and Tennessee Titans. The division was founded in 2002 when the NFL expanded from six divisions to eight.
The Colts have won the most AFC South titles with nine while the Houston Texans are second, having won the division five times. The Tennessee Titans have won the division twice while the Jags have won it once.
Last five AFC South division winners:
This was the first year for new head coach Frank Reich. It started poorly, but the team would catch fire in the end and win nine of its final 10 games. They advanced to the playoffs, knocking off the AFC South champion Houston Texans in the wild-card round. The Colts season came to an end when they lost to the Kansas City Chiefs in the divisional round of the playoffs.
Luck went down to injury before the season began, and that was a portend of things to come. Scott Tolzien had the reins at quarterback for the first game, but the team shifted over to Jacoby Brissett in Week 2. Brissett did a serviceable job as the unexpected starter, but the team as a whole underperformed and slogged to a record of 4-12. Head coach Chuck Pagano was relieved of his duties after the season came to a close.
When a team has one of the top quarterbacks in the league, they are expected to at least be in the running for a playoff spot. For the second year in a row, the Colts would miss out while going 8-8. After dropping the first two games of the year, the team would go through a maddening stretch of trading wins and losses. For the season as a whole, the club won back-to-back games just once.
A year after making it to the NFL’s final four, optimism was high that the Colts were ready for a run to the Super Bowl. It didn’t work out that way. After dropping the first two games of the year, the team won three straight. They followed that up by dropping three in a row. After the Week 10 bye, the inconsistency would return. The club won four of its final seven, but a three-game losing streak led them to a record of 8-8.
The Colts entered 2014 expecting big things. They won the AFC South the previous year and made it to the divisional round of the playoffs before falling to the New England Patriots. The team lived up to expectations with an 11-5 record and another divisional crown. Indianapolis knocked off the Cincinnati Bengals and Denver Broncos in the playoffs. That set the stage for a date with the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship game, where they would fall by a score of 45-7.
When you go to bet on the Colts, there are three main types of bets you’ll see:
Let’s walk you through each, so you have an understanding of how to read the odds:
The point spread is a margin of victory. When you’re betting on these lines, you might see something that looks like the following:
In this case, what you’re betting on is which team will “cover” the margin of victory. The first thing you want to look for is the plus or minus sign. If it’s a minus sign, what that means is that the team has to win but 2.5 points or more. In this case, if you bet the Colts, they would have to win by 3 points or more for you to cover.
On the other hand, the plus sign means you’re getting points. In this case, if the Texans lost by 2 points or one, or won the game outright, you’d win your bet.
The moneyline is a type of bet that solely focuses on the outright winner; the margin is not a factor. You might see a betting line that looks like this:
What this line tells you is how much you’ll win betting on each side. The minus sign indicates the favorite. It also tells you that if you bet $180 on the Colts and they win, you’d win $100. On the flip side, the plus sign tells you how much you’d win if you bet $100. In this case, a $100 winning bet on the Texans would pay +150.
The total is another way to bet on football games as it allows you to bet on the combined score of the two teams. If you’re not sure who will win the game, this gives you the option to bet on whether it will be a high- or low-scoring affair.
You might see a line like this:
In this case, what you have to decide is whether the combined score of the two teams will be more or less than 54.5. If you think the game might be a defensive scoring contest, you’d bet under. If you think it will be a high-scoring shootout, you’d bet over.
Scores like 20-10, 27-20 and 50-3 are all examples of unders in this case. Scores like 54-20 and 30-27 are examples of overs.
There are many options for betting on the Indianapolis Colts.
Here is a quick list of a few more popular bet types:
Futures: Futures are a type of bet that’s decided down the road. For example, if it’s still the preseason and you wanted to bet on the Colts to win the AFC South Division or to win the Super Bowl. These bets are risky as they are long-term and a lot can happen. However, they often come with the reward of a sizable payout.
Parlay: Parlays are a type of multiplier where you tie-in multiple bets. For example, let’s say you bet the Colts, Patriots and 49ers to win (all in separate games). If any of them lose, you lose the entire bet. However, the upside of parlays is they offer big payouts.
Props: Props are types of bets that are focused on the performance of a player or team. For example, betting on how many passing yards Luck will have in a game or whether the Colts will score in the last two minutes of a half. This allows you to bet on the game without deciding on who will win.
That’s important to know because they’re not a team that deals with the weather when they are the host. For eight games a year, they’re in their cozy indoors. That means if they have to go on the road in December, to face frostbite or frigid temperatures, they’re not used to that.
In the NFL, teams can play on grass or turf, and the Colts play on turf. Currently, the type of turf they play on is the Shaw Sports Turf Momentum.
Turf provides an edge for teams who rely on finesse as it highlights speeds and explosiveness. That means when they’re the host; they tend to have an edge as they are used to it. However, when they go on the road to play on grass — especially if it’s wet, snowy or muddy — and their footing isn’t as good, that tends to be a disadvantage to them.
The Colts play in the Eastern time zone, so that’s important to know for a few reasons. For starters, road trips to New York and New England are short hauls for them. They don’t even have to change their clocks when they visit many of the teams.
However, a visit to Los Angeles or San Francisco is a bit of a journey for the Colts. They’re in an odd spot where they have to travel quite a bit to face their divisional foes as the Houston Texans and Jacksonville Jaguars are a long trip south, although the Tennessee Titans are closer.
During the storied history of the Colts, several different rivalries have emerged. Some have stood the test of time, while others have ebbed and flowed based on the era.
Currently, three rivals stick out. Any time one of these teams cross paths with Indianapolis, it’s a good idea to circle the game on the schedule as a must-see.
The Colts franchise traces its roots back to 1953.
Initially located in Baltimore, the team would go on to win three championships in the days before the merger of the NFL and AFL.
The 1958 NFL Championship game was particularly memorable, as the team took down the New York Giants in an overtime thriller, a game that many view as the one which put the NFL on the map.
The Colts were also involved in one of the biggest upsets in NFL history. Entering Super Bowl III, they were big favorites over the New York Jets of the rival AFL. They would go on to lose by a score of 16-7, with the game going on to signify that the NFL and AFL were on equal footing.
The team would win Super Bowl V over the Dallas Cowboys, and go on to win a number of division crowns through the 1970s. In 1983, the team was embroiled in a dispute with the city of Baltimore over requested upgrades to Memorial Stadium. The result was the Colts’ franchise packing up and relocating to Baltimore.
The Colts didn’t find a ton of success in their new locale, but fortunes changed when the team selected Manning with the first overall pick in the 1998 NFL draft. The team was competitive throughout the Manning era and was able to take down Super Bowl XLI in 2006.
In the first round of the 2012 NFL draft, the Colts selected Luck, a quarterback out of Stanford. The team had the first overall pick that year due to its poor record of 2-14 the prior season.
It was the beginning of a new era in Indianapolis. The team released Manning in the offseason, so the team was ready to begin anew with what they hoped was another franchise player.
Their hopes were answered. Luck evolved into one of the top players in the league. Among his accomplishments were being selected to the Pro Bowl four times, and an NFL Comeback Player of the Year award in 2018. He dealt with several injuries in the latter part of his career. On the eve of the 2019 regular season, Luck unexpectedly retired from the NFL.
While he never led the team to its ultimate goal of a Super Bowl, the team made it to the postseason four times with him behind center. He finished his professional career with 23,671 passing yards, 171 touchdowns versus 83 interceptions, and a completion percentage of 60.8.
Here are the all-time leaders for the Colts franchise in the major statistical categories.
The Colts franchise has had 13 players inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame, as well as five coaches and executives. Here are the players who have been enshrined in Canton, along with their position and year of induction.
The team also has a Ring of Honor at Lucas Oil Stadium, which was established in 1996. It honors those who have made the most significant contributions to the franchise and currently includes 10 players.
Here they are with their positions and year honored:
Throughout NFL history, there are more than 200 players who have come from the state of Indiana, many of whom are from Indianapolis. Currently, there are 15 players in the NFL from Indiana and five from Indianapolis alone.
Here are those from the latter category, listed by position and current team:
Sports betting was legalized in the state of Indiana in 2019. Residents must be 21 years of age to place wagers and physically located in the state of Indiana. For the initial rollout, betting was legalized at physical sportsbooks with online and mobile betting now live as well.
Jim Irsay is the current owner of the Indianapolis Colts. He took over as principal owner in 1997, succeeding Robert Irsay. Back in 1972, Irsay purchased the Los Angeles Rams for $19 million. He proceeded to swap teams with Carroll Rosenbloom, who was the owner of the then Baltimore Colts.
According to Forbes estimates for 2019, the Colts are valued at $2.65 billion, an increase of 11 percent over the previous year. The team’s operating income is estimated at $104 million for the most recent year.
The Colts have two Super Bowl titles. They defeated the Dallas Cowboys in Super Bowl V, and took down the Chicago Bears in Super Bowl XLI. The team has also been to two other Super Bowls, losing to the New York Jets in Super Bowl III and to the New Orleans Saints in Super Bowl XLIV.
The Colts have made it to the postseason 28 times in franchise history. Five of those appearances took place prior to the merger of the NFL and AFL. The team made it to three NFL Championship games prior to the Super Bowl era, going 2-1. The club has made it to four Super Bowls, going 2-2. All told, the playoff record stands at 23-24.
Frank Reich is the current head coach of the Indianapolis Colts. Prior to taking the job, he served as offensive coordinator for the Philadelphia Eagles. This is his first head coaching gig in the NFL, but Reich has extensive experience at the assistant and coordinator level. He’s also a former NFL player with a career that spanned from 1985 through 1998. Most memorably, he served as backup QB for the powerhouse Buffalo Bills teams of the early 1990s.
Lucas Oil Stadium.
Jacoby Brissett is the current starting QB for the Colts. He took over for Andrew Luck, who unexpectedly retired in advance of the 2019 season. Brissett also served as starter for the team in 2017 when Luck was out to injury.
The Baltimore Colts played their home games at Memorial Stadium. Team owner Robert Irsay wanted the city to pay for upgrades, but no progress was made. The matter continued to escalate, and Irsay negotiated a back-door deal with the city of Indianapolis to relocate the team. On March 28, 1984, the franchise abruptly packed up its things in the middle of the night on moving trucks and relocated. Baltimore would remain without an NFL team until 1996 when the Cleveland Browns relocated and became known as the Baltimore Ravens.