Colts Futures Odds After Matt Ryan Trade | Super Bowl, AFC, & Division Lines
The latest NFL quarterback domino to drop did so on Monday afternoon as the Indianapolis Colts acquired Matt Ryan from the Atlanta Falcons for a 2022 third-round pick.
Ryan has been the face of the Falcons franchise since Atlanta selected him with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2008 NFL Draft. He departs as the team’s all-time winningest quarterback, leading the Falcons to the postseason six times and the Super Bowl once (we all know how that one ended).
Things haven’t been quite the same for Ryan since that 28-3 halftime lead over Tom Brady‘s New England Patriots disappeared. The Falcons have suffered four straight losing seasons with Ryan at the helm and decided to go in a different direction after reportedly having interest in Deshaun Watson.
Atlanta’s loss is Indianapolis’ gain, as the Colts have found their fifth different Week 1 starting quarterback in as many years. The position has been one of uncertainty since the early retirement of Andrew Luck, who will only be 33 years old in September.
Ryan will replace Carson Wentz, who was traded to the Washington Commanders earlier this offseason. Wentz’s time in Indianapolis started brightly, but he struggled down the stretch and had a pair of turnovers in the Colts’ embarrassing, season-ending loss to Jacksonville in Week 18.
With Ryan under center next season, do the Colts’ chances of winning Super Bowl 57 improve? What are Indianapolis’ best bets for 2022-2023?
Note: Colts futures bet odds are current as of Tuesday, March 22, at 6 p.m. ET. These NFL odds may shift as sportsbooks adjust after the trade.
Colts Super Bowl 57 Odds with Ryan
Colts to Win Super Bowl 57 (+2500) at Caesars
Each of the last two offseasons, Colts GM Chris Ballard has brought in a veteran quarterback with the hope they could take Indianapolis on a deep postseason run. Neither move paid dividends.
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In 2020, the Colts brought in Philip Rivers on a one-year deal in what turned out to be the final season of his NFL career. Rivers led Indianapolis to an 11-5 record, but the Colts bowed out of the postseason in a Wild Card loss to the Buffalo Bills.
Miss the postseason altogether in 2021 was probably even more disappointing, especially when you consider the breakout campaign that running back Jonathan Taylor put together in his sophomore season.
It wasn’t all Wentz’s fault, but his two sub-200-yard passing days in Week 17 and 18 losses certainly put a damper on the campaign as a whole.
Now, Ryan will look to revitalize both the Colts and his own career, which has taken a bit of a turn in recent years. The 36-year-old will have a lot more help around him in Indianapolis, however, as he’s lacked pass protection and gotten minimal help from his defense over the past four seasons.
Ryan will now take over an offense where Jonathan Taylor is the focal point. He has a talented offensive line, a solid playmaker on the outside in Michael Pittman Jr., and a reliable tight end in Mo Alie-Cox.
A few more weapons would be nice, but this a team that finished second in the league in rushing at 149.4 yards per game. Pair that with a defense that allowed only 21.5 points per game (T-9 in the NFL) and Ryan doesn’t really have to do too much to have success.
While success is nice, the real question is: Can the Colts legitimately compete for a Super Bowl with this plug-and-play formula?
Personally, I don’t think so.
Ryan will be 37 years old by the time Week 1 rolls around and hasn’t shown his 2016 MVP-level form in some time. He’s probably a slight upgrade on Wentz when given the proper protection and weapons, but he doesn’t stack up with the young star quarterbacks in the league, let alone those in the AFC, anymore.
When looking at Indianapolis’ Super Bowl odds (+2500) and comparing them to teams like the Ravens and Bengals (+2200), it’s hard to come up with reasons to bet the Colts over more enticing options.
Colts AFC Championship Odds with Ryan
Colts to Win AFC Championship (+1300) at Caesars
After adding Ryan, the Colts currently have the eighth-best odds of any AFC team to reach Super Bowl 57, tied with the division rival Tennessee Titans.
Indianapolis is decidedly in the AFC’s middle tier with the Bengals (+1200), Ravens (+1200), Titans (+1300), and Patriots (+1700).
Of those four teams, to me, the Colts fit in with the Titans and Patriots the most. They are teams that primarily look to run the football, have talented defenses, and capable, but limited quarterback play.
In the modern NFL, it’s very difficult to win without a dynamic passing attack and the AFC is chock-full of em. I don’t see the Colts making the leap from missing out on the playoffs to making the Super Bowl just because of Matt Ryan.
This experiment feels more likely to end the way the Rivers’ one did in 2020.
Colts AFC South Division Odds with Ryan
Colts to Win the AFC South (+115) at Caesars
The Colts are co-favorites with the Titans to win the AFC South at (+115), well ahead of the Jaguars (+700) and Texans (+3000).
Indianapolis shockingly hasn’t won a division title since 2014. Since then, Houston has won the AFC South four times, Tennessee twice, and Jacksonville once.
The Titans, winners of the AFC South the past two seasons, stick out as the biggest threat to the Colts as Derrick Henry should be back healthy and A.J. Brown has emerged as a legitimate No. 1 WR. The Jaguars could also be an emerging threat after investing heavily in free agency this offseason.
I do think the Colts are legitimate contenders in this division, however, especially since it should be a two-horse race. The Titans and the Colts are very similar squads and the upgrade from Wentz to Ryan could be enough to put Indianapolis over the edge.
Colts to Win the AFC South
Bet $20, Payout $43
Matt Ryan 2022 Prop Bets
Matt Ryan to Win NFL MVP (+6000) at Caesars
If you’re betting this, you’re probably a diehard Colts fan.
Sure, anything is possible, but given how much Indianapolis is likely to rely on the ground game again in 2022, it’s not likely.