What Went Wrong
Peyton Manning made a great case for the league MVP award by not taking a single snap in 2011. Manning, who had three separate procedures on his neck, spent the season watching and wincing as the Colts flirted with 0-16 only to rally and win two of their final three games.
Indianapolis couldn't overcome their lousy quarterback play and the lack of a shutdown defense. Both will be areas of focus as the team looks ahead to 2012.
The Good News
Manning will likely be healthy by the time the 2012 season begins. If he isn't then, he might never be again. The Colts have the first overall pick in the draft as well and look like a prime candidate to select Standford's Andrew Luck.
The Colts also are just a year removed from a playoff berth and probably are not as bad as their record indicated. While they'll still be pedestrian without Manning and even with Luck, they could improve their fortunes greatly by acquiring a more proven quarterback.
The Big Choices
The biggest choice of the offseason is what to do under center. The team can try to retain Manning and draft Luck, but that is unrealistic financially. They could cut ties with Manning and go with Luck, but that's risky. They could trade the pick for a huge haul and fix other issues.
They also have to decide whether or not to keep coach Jim Caldwell or get a fresh voice in the locker room. There are some interesting names out there (Jeff Fisher, Jim Tressel, Bill Cowher, Jon Gruden), but right now it looks like they may stick with the steady Caldwell.