Originally written on Cippin on Sports  |  Last updated 10/23/14
The Indianpolis Colts were the darling to the 2012 NFL Season, going from the worst record in football to 11-5 and a playoff appearance. Andrew Luck was a big part of the turnaround as was General Manager Ryan Grigson, who was deservedly named Executive of the Year. Drafting Luck alone would have made any draft class deserve an “A,” but Grigson proceeded to hit on players such as Dwayne Allen (3rd round), T.Y. Hilton (3rd round) and Vick Ballard (5th round). He also led an aggressive roster turnover, ridding key veterans such as Jeff Saturday, Pierre Garçon Gary Brackett and of course Peyton Manning, but also keeping some veterans like Reggie Wayne, Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis. He then added some low-cost veterans via free agency and trades like Donnie Avery, Mike McGlynn, Darius Butler and Winston Justice. All of these moves made it possible for the Colts to have one of the greatest single-season turnarounds in NFL history. Coming into this off-season, riding high off an 11-5 record, Grigson and the Colts were armed with $44 million in cap space. The Colts didn’t waste any time spending that money, diving head-first into the free-agent frenzy, a total 360 from the strategy they used last year. They ended up with some mediocre talents like Gosder Cherilus, Erik Walden and Rick Jean-Francois and paid way above market value for them. They gave Cherilus, who has a spotty injury history, $34.5 million and $15 million guaranteed, while giving Walden (who was PFF’s worst outside linebacker available) $16 million and then gave $22 million to Jean-Francois, who while talented, only has three career sacks and played in just 27% of snaps last season. The signings of Lawrence Sidbury and Donald Thomas, while not as bad, also raised some question marks. Their best signing was probably LaRon Landry (4 years, $24 million), who had a solid season for the Jets last year, but also has big-time injury concerns. In total they spent about $34 millon of cap space on these signings. These moves all seem like a plot to make a run at the Super Bowl, but simply put the Colts aren’t on that level yet. Yes they were 11-5 last year, but look beyond the record and another picture emerges. You’ll see that the Colts played the league’s easiest schedule, were ridiculously good in close games (9-1 in games decided by 7 points or less), and were actually outscored by their opponents. In reality, the Colts were probably more along the lines of a 7-9, 8-8 team last year that happened to get lucky. None of the players they signed are true difference makers (with the possible exception of a healthy Landry), but rather mediocre talents who are getting paid way more than they should be. Grigson earned a ton of good faith with the shrewd moves he made in his first year on the job, but it’s hard to get behind the decisions he made this offseason. Andrew Luck will always keep the Colts competitive, but at this stage it’s hard to envision the Colts coming close to replicating last year’s success.  
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Memorabilia dealer at center of Todd Gurley scandal fired

Colt McCoy on learning he was starting ‘it’s about f—ing time’

Four Questions for Game 3 of the World Series

Percy Harvin not planning on changing

Ricky Williams: People are let down when I turn down weed

Joe Maddon opts out of contract with Rays

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Randall Cobb: Contract situation played role in slow start

Notre Dame WR faces discipline if he hooked up with porn star?

PGA president calls Ian Poulter ‘lil girl’ for Nick Faldo comments

Belichick declines to address Revis' reported tardiness

Texas mayor delays Halloween for Friday night football game

C-USA hired PR firm to help Marshall’s playoff chances

WATCH: American flag rips during Game 3 national anthem

WATCH: Tony Parker draws foul by simply yelling 'hey'

Video: Tom Izzo takes the stage with KISS on Midnight Madness

Eight NFL records that won’t be broken for a long time

Big trouble for Bruins: Chara out 4-6 weeks, possibly more

Blazers, Seahawks owner Paul Allen gives $100M to fight ebola

'FIFA 15' glitch turns goalie into headless giant with no arms

WATCH: HBO releases trailer of 'The Offseason: Kevin Durant'

Broncos corner snags INT, then takes pregnant wife to hospital

Gurley dressed up as a pirate for Halloween, yelled, 'Free me'

What the return of Luis Suarez means for Barcelona

Nick Saban pens touching letter after high school coach dies

Colts News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Trouble for Bruins: Chara out 4-6 weeks

Joe Maddon opts out of contract with Rays

NBA Replay Center debuts next week

World Series win = Giants dynasty?

Reliving the worst college football game of the last 10 years

NFL teams facing must-win scenarios in Week 8

What the return of Luis Suarez means for Barcelona

Programs with a lot on the line this week

Wilson denies rumored Harvin rift

Lakers: Steve Nash out for season

Is Mack Brown SMU's best option?

Are sports leagues finally getting serious about domestic violence?

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.