2017 Projections: Andrew Luck and the Indianapolis Colts

In this series, I use an internal version of the Projection Machine to explore likely outcomes for offensive players on all 32 NFL teams. The Projection Machine employs a top-down approach that builds on team-wide assumptions to develop expectations of offensive output. I will use staff averages to help guide the inputs underlying the projections. Check out this article for further information on the process used by the RotoViz team. All 2017 Indianapolis Colts projections are based on PPR scoring. I followed alphabetical order while writing this series but skipped Baltimore and Indianapolis. Given the uncertainty surrounding the health of both team’s quarterbacks, I wanted to wait until I had as much information as possible. With the season less than a week away, Andrew Luck’s health remains a major concern, and it seems unlikely that he’ll be available for Week 1. To make this article as useful as possible, I’m going to change up the format from the rest of the series.1 We’ll look at the major fantasy players in the Colts’ offense and the impact that Luck missing one week, three weeks, or six weeks would have on their fantasy prospects.

Depth Chart and Baseline Workload Assumptions

QB – Andrew Luck Backup QB –  Scott Tolzien RB1 – Frank Gore — 55 percent rushes, seven percent targets RB2 – Marlon Mack — 17 percent rushes, eight percent targets WR1 – T.Y. Hilton — 26 percent targets WR2 – Donte Moncrief — 17 percent of targets WR3 – Kamar Aiken — 12 percent TE1 – Jack Doyle — 12 percent

Scoring Margin and Pace Tendencies

To get a sense of the number of plays that the Colts will run in 2017, I played with the team’s scoring margin and pace tendencies in the Projection Machine. The distribution of passing and running attempts didn’t vary significantly between scenarios. Regardless of the number of games that Luck misses, the Colts are projected to call between 560 to 580 passing plays and 410 to 425 rushing plays. In the baseline scenario, which assumes that Luck misses Week 1 and the team wins eight and a half games, I set the scoring margin to -0.50, pass tendency to 0.02, and pace tendency to 0.25.
  1. I would have liked to get this out last week, but just wasn’t able to find the time.  (back)

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By Dave Caban | @DaveCabanFF | Archive