Over Or Under 8.5 Regular-Season Wins For The Colts?

Coming off a 7-9 campaign, Indy made some major decisions in the offseason

The Odds

  • Coming off of a 7-9 campaign, the 2020 Indianapolis Colts were assigned an 8.5 regular-season win total by DraftKings Sportsbook

  • The Colts have +2800 odds to win the Super Bowl (T-10th highest), +1400 odds to win the AFC Championship (T-3rd highest) and are the favorites to win the AFC South (+138). Further, they’re favorites to make the playoffs (-152). 

  • MGM lists the over 8.5 with -176 odds and the under at +145. Further, MGM lists a 0-4 win outcome at +5000, a 5-8 win outcome at +115, a 9-12 win outcome at -143 and a 13-16 win outcome at +2500. 

  • While the 9-12 win range is the betting favorite, the Colts don’t quite project to be one of the best teams in the NFL, given their +2000 odds to have the best regular-season record via FanDuel (T9th highest). It’s also worth mentioning that coach Frank Reich has +2000 odds to win Coach of the Year (T-5th highest).

The Schedule

  • The Colts are listed as -310 moneyline favorites to win Week 1 on the road against the Jacksonville Jaguars (by 7 points), and are listed as 3-point Week 2 home favorites against the Minnesota Vikings

  • Indy has the easiest schedule in the NFL when factoring in their opponents’ win totals (.480). 

  • Bye: Week 7

  • Home games: Vikings in Week 2, New York Jets in Week 3, Cincinnati Bengals in Week 6, Baltimore Ravens in Week 9, Green Bay Packers in Week 11, Tennessee Titans in Week 12, Houston Texans in Week 15, Jaguars in Week 17

  • Road games: Jaguars in Week 1, Chicago Bears in Week 4, Cleveland Browns in Week 5, Detroit Lions in Week 8, Titans in Week 10, Texans in Week 13, Los Vegas Raiders in Week 14, Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 16

  • Of those opponents, only the Vikings, Ravens, Packers, Titans and Texans finished above .500 last season. 

  • Although the team lost Jabaal Sheard, Eric Ebron and Devin Funchess, among a few others, the team revamped their offense and defense in the offseason. The Colts ranked 19th in Football Outsiders' Offensive DVOA and 17th in Defensive DVOA, 16th in Special Teams DVOA last season and are positioned to make improvements in all three areas.

Offensive Changes

  • The signing of quarterback Philip Rivers was the team’s major splash of the offseason. Taking over for Jacoby Brissett (18 TD, 6 INT, 2,942 passing yards, 60.9% completion rate), Rivers has a 4,249.5 passing yard over/under via FanDuel. 

  • Rivers threw for 4,615 yards with 23 touchdowns and 20 interceptions for the Los Angeles Chargers last season and played all 16 regular season games for the 14th-straight year. In a recent NFL.com article, Colts offensive coordinator Nick Sirianni mentioned that Rivers signed with Indy because he loved the thought of playing behind an offensive line consisting of Anthony Castonzo, Quenton Nelson, Ryan Kelly, Braden Smith and Mark Glowinski. All-in-all, the Colts have two starting-quality QBs on their roster, which is a major plus given the violence of the sport.

  • Losing Ebron might sting, but replacing him with veteran Trey Burton was a smart move. Although he dealt with an injury as a member of the Chicago Bears last season, he’s just one year removed from a 54-catch, 569-yard, 6-touchdown 2018 campaign. Alongside Jack Doyle, Burton will be an asset.

  • The team also made two high offensive picks in the 2020 NFL Draft: former USC wideout Michael Pittman Jr. and former Wisconsin running back Jonathan Taylor, both of whom were taken in the 2nd Round. 

  • The 6’4, 223-pound Pittman caught 101 passes for 1,275 in his senior season at USC and will likely immediately start at one of the outside wideout spots while T.Y. Hilton, Parris Campbell and Zach Pascal will also factor into the equation. 

  • Taylor, the most decorated collegiate running back of all-time, will be a major factor in Indy’s backfield while Marlon Mack (247 carries for 1,091 yards, 8 TD in 2019) will also shoulder the load on the ground. Taylor racked up an insane 6,174 rushing yards and 50 rushing touchdowns on 6.7 yards per carry in just three seasons at UW and will look to make an instant impact within Indy's offense, likely splitting carries evenly with Mack.

Defensive Changes

  • Last season, the Colts allowed opposing running backs to pick up 4.24 adjusted line yards per play and opposing offensive lines to have an 83% Power Success mark, which was the worst in the entire NFL by a wide margin.

  • To address this, Indy traded for former San Francisco 49ers standout DeForest Buckner, who has ranked up 263 tackles, 28.5 sacks, and 74 quarterback hits over four seasons. As one of the top interior linemen in the entire NFL, Buckner’s presence will likely make a huge impact. 

  • Cornerback Xavier Rhodes signed a one-year, $5 million prove-it deal and will be looking to re-establish himself as one of the top corners in the league. 

  • Darius Leonard, Anthony Walker, Malik Hooker and Justin Houston are other names that highlight defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus’ 4-3 attacking scheme that’s now entering its third year. 

  • Cornerback Rock Ya-Sin, defensive end Ben Banogu, linebacker Bobby Okereke, safety Khari Willis and cornerback Marvell Tell III were 2019 draft picks and ended up as starters or with significant playing time by the end of 2019. They’re expected to make strides in the offseason and their development will be key in 2020. 

  • Indy selected former Utah safety Julian Blackmon in the 3rd Round and while he’s recovering from offseason knee surgery, his experience as a playmaker as both a cornerback and safety was on full display during his collegiate career, as he racked up nine interceptions. He could emerge as a bit of a Swiss Army Knife in Indy's secondary due to his versatility.

Best Bet

  • The Colts brought in a future Hall of Famer at quarterback, added the most decorated college running back of all-time and bolstered their receiving corps, all of whom should thrive behind Indy’s elite offensive line. Further, adding Buckner and Rhodes could transform an average unit into an above-average one, considering the fact that a number of young players will likely continue to evolve. 

  • The team’s light schedule should also work in their favor.

  • Expect OVER the 8.5 regular-season win mark to hit. Click the button below to place this bet on FanDuel right now!

Note: the advice above is the analysis of the author and does not necessarily reflect the position of BetQL. The outcomes described are not guaranteed in any way.

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