As the AFC representative for Super Bowl XLIV, the Indianapolis Cots have many reasons to think they are going to be able to return to the Super Bowl in 2010. Under center, they have Peyton Manning, who has proven to be the best regular season QB that may have ever played the game.
That is the problem. Even though Manning is amazing during the regular season, almost every time he gets to the playoffs he turns more into average than he does great.
Manning has made it to the Super Bowl two times in his career to this point, and has finished with a 1-1 record. Some people outside of Indianapolis will say that Manning under pressure is just not as amazing as, say, Tom Brady.
Peyton Manning has been to the playoffs a total of 10 times in his career. In six of those season the Colts were eliminated in the first game they played. Manning has an overall post-season record of 9-9.
However, Peyton Manning is not the only reason that the Colts are not going to win the Super Bowl in 2010.
Many people thought with the retirement of Tony Dungy, the Colts would immediately step back, but why would they? The team that went to the Super Bowl last year, was the same team the Dungy built. The rest of the coaching staff stayed in tact.
This year, Manning is going to have a new offensive coordinator. Tom Moore has stepped down, and that could result in some issues with the offense.
The defense is more of a question mark than the offense is. Dwight Freeney is aging, and Bob Sanders has not been able to avoid the injury bug.
Not only that, the Colts do not have a lot of depth on the defensive side of the ball, and with a high scoring offense, you need to have depth to keep your starters fresh towards the end of the game.
Add to all of that, the Houston Texans have been steadily improving their team, and they are ready to push the Colts for the division crown.
My prediction: Colts finish the regular season with a 12-4 record, and win the AFC South.