2023 NFL Power Rankings: Indianapolis Colts

Throughout the 2023 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Below you will find a Week 1 roundup for the Indianapolis Colts in our consensus 2023 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 29

On the hot seat: OL coach Tony Sparano Jr.

This is Sparano's first season, so his inclusion here isn't necessarily about his continued employment. Instead, it's a recognition that the Colts are asking a lot of him. They want him to resurrect the team's offensive line, and to do so without major personnel changes. The Colts once counted on their line as a strength of the team and still have tens of millions of dollars invested in its key players. But there has been continued slippage during the past two seasons and Indianapolis is worse off for it. Fixing it falls mostly on Sparano. -- Stephen Holder

NFL.com -- Rank: 29

There has been a near-constant stream of disappointment for the Colts since dropping that fateful Week 18 game in January of 2022, and there's only so much light on the horizon, with Jonathan Taylor opening the season on the PUP list -- and with his contract demands remaining unresolved. It's not the way Indianapolis wanted to start the Anthony Richardson era, but these are the cards they've been dealt (and dealt to themselves). Richardson offers the best hope for a surprise season if he can have a Cam Newton-like Year 1. Newton helped the 2011 Panthers improve by four wins, limping to a slow start, then putting up an encouraging finish. That's a reasonable outlook, I think, for your 2023 Colts. Will Taylor be part of that? No one knows.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 26

Anthony Richardson will start as a rookie, which means there will be growing pains. He will be fun to watch, but the Jonathan Taylor situation doesn't help him.

USA Today -- Rank: 29

They've got the third quarterback (Anthony Richardson) taken in the 2023 draft, but questions remain as to how his general inexperience will manifest against first-string NFL defenders ... and how that might be further exacerbated by RB Jonathan Taylor's ongoing absence.

The Athletic -- Rank: 30

Best-case scenario: Early on, one of the more underrated front sevens helps the Colts start fast against what is pegged as the third-easiest schedule in the league. As the season goes on, Richardson starts to look like the unicorn athlete he is and becomes appointment television for all football fans as he sets a rookie quarterback rushing record. A Week 18 win against the Texans delivers a division crown to Shane Steichen in his coaching debut, while linebacker Zaire Franklin gets the ultimate revenge on Jason Kelce by starting a podcast that rises to No. 1 on the charts.

Worst-case scenario: The offensive line craters and the receiving options are so uninspiring that the Colts feel a little like last year's Bears brass, without an inkling of how good their young quarterback might be. The Jonathan Taylor drama ends with him being dealt for a first-round pick that general manager Chris Ballard uses on another running back.

FOX -- Rank: 29

The same logic applies in Indy as it does in Houston — except the vibes are considerably weirder. All the talk around the Colts should be about Anthony Richardson making his much-anticipated debut. Instead, we're all stuck in this strange contract standoff between Jonathan Taylor and Colts owner Jim Irsay. Not only did the Colts not trade their disgruntled running back, but they didn't take him off the Physically Unable to Perform list — which means he won't be able to help Richardson for at least a month. Richardson will be must-see TV, but it's hard to feel excited about much else.

Yahoo! -- Rank: 29

The Giants came to an agreement with Saquon Barkley. The Raiders and Josh Jacobs made peace. The Colts have blown apart their relationship with Jonathan Taylor, didn't trade him and stuck him on the PUP list for at least four weeks. It was a little different for Taylor, who is on his rookie deal and not the franchise tag, but it's still stunning how team owner Jim Irsay has handled the entire situation.

PFT -- Rank: 31

They'd be higher if the owner hadn't botched the relationship with Jonathan Taylor.

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