There aren't many NFL teams set up better for the future than the Indianapolis Colts, and that's because of 25-year old superstar quarterback Andrew Luck. While the team looks to compete for titles for the next decade with Luck under center, however, they're also expected to be one of the top teams in the NFL in 2015 and their offseason moves point to one thing very clearly: they're in win-now mode.
Tight end Dwayne Allen has noticed it. "They want to win, and they want to win now — there is no hiding from that point," Allen told the USA Today's Lindsay Jones. "From the owner down to the GM down to the head coach, we know that our time is now."
That's not to say that they haven't been trying to win in past years but rather that the team realizes the talent and the potential they have to do something special this year. With Andrew Luck playing on a bargain deal that will pay him just over $7 million in 2015, the Colts approached the offseason looking to add as much talent around him as possible, signing wide receiver Andre Johnson, running back Frank Gore, pass rusher Trent Cole, offensive lineman Todd Herremans, and defensive lineman Kendall Langford in free agency and having a nice draft class, led by first round wide receiver Phillip Dorsett. The Colts signed older players in free agency, but that was exactly what they needed to do with long-term extensions coming soon for guys like Luck, T.Y. Hilton, and Anthony Castonzo. These signings give the Colts a good shot at the Super Bowl this year without crippling them for the future.
Inside linebacker D'Qwell Jackson, who the team signed last offseason, spent the first eight seasons of his career with the Cleveland Browns. He was part of a team that won more than five games just once and never made the postseason, but when he signed with the Colts, that all changed. In his first year with the team, they won eleven games, won the division, made the playoffs, and won two playoff games. He's seen teams try to build for the future; he's glad to finally be on a team that is ready to contend now.
"There is only so much you can plan for in the future. If you have a chance to do it now, do it now," inside linebacker D'Qwell Jackson told Jones. "Trust me, I'm all on board for it because of my history in Cleveland where ... we didn't make moves to win right now."
There's a lot of excitement for the Colts heading into the 2015 season, and for good reason. With Andrew Luck coming off of a season in which he set the Colts' single-season passing yards record and led the league in touchdown passes in just his third season, with added weapons in Johnson, Dorsett, and Duron Carter added to T.Y. Hilton and Donte Moncrief, plus the tight end attack of Dwayne Allen and Coby Fleener and Frank Gore at running back, the offense should be one of the absolute best in the NFL. There are still questions about the defense, but so far in the Andrew Luck era his offense has been good enough to mask over a lot of issues, and this should be the best offensive unit he's had so far.
The fans know it, and the players do as well - the Colts' time is now, and the expectations for 2015 couldn't be much higher.