Power rankings are a funny thing to begin with, and that’s especially true in the offseason. We haven’t yet seen these teams on the field, so there’s no way of truly telling which free agent moves and draft picks will work out and which ones won’t.
But what power rankings do tells us is what people currently think about the teams and how they might be entering 2017, and so it at least serves as an interesting discussion tool.
This morning, ESPN released their post-draft power rankings, and it saw the Colts rise a few spots from where they were in the post-free agency rankings. The Colts were ranked 19th, a jump of three spots.
The Colts appear to have upgraded at general manager, and new guy Chris Ballard justifiably went defense heavy in the draft. Keeping Andrew Luck off the field a little bit more isn't a bad way to try to keep Andrew Luck safe.
Of course, the Colts are third in the AFC South in the power rankings, as the Texans are ranked 11th and the Titans 12. The Colts are firmly in third place behind them, however, as the Jaguars check in at number 27.
Tracking ESPN’s power rankings this offseason, the Colts were 19th following the Super Bowl, then 22nd following free agency, and now they’re back up to 19th after the draft. So in that sense, it doesn’t seem like ESPN thinks the Colts improved much this offseason at all, though that doesn’t factor in what other teams did. The Colts seemed to get better, though we all understand that it will be a process. The free agent additions aren’t going to magically fix the issues overnight, and while the draft netted the colts some good players, they also won’t provide the complete solution.
Rather, Chris Ballard is slowly but surely bringing in talent that should be an upgrade and that should have room to continue to grow, as he’s bringing in younger guys with potential. He’s doing things the right way currently, but that doesn’t mean the Colts will be contenders next year.
With that said, however, when you look at the Colts’ favorable schedule, their division, and the fact that they have Andrew Luck at quarterback, it’s not at all unreasonable to think they could make a return to the playoffs. Doing so, however, might not represent the overall state of the roster as much as some might think. Again, it’s a work in progress, but Ballard seems to be taking the Colts in the right direction at least.