The Indianapolis Colts, with a 4-11-1 record, face the Houston Texans this Sunday in their regular-season finale. The Colts are coming onto this week with a 6-game losing streak after their tough 38-10 loss over the New York Giants, who just secured their first playoff birth since 2016.
The outcome will determine where the Colts sit in the unenviable position of the 2023 NFL draft order. While they currently hold the fifth overall pick, an unlikely win against the Texans could see them move up to the third or fourth spot.
On the flip side, a loss coupled with results elsewhere could drop them to sixth or worse. This has unleashed much speculation about who might be available for selection and which direction the general manager might take on draft night. With only one game standing between them and the off-season break it is time to batten down hatches and wait for fate – and the draft order – to reveal itself.
Texans-Colts Week 18 Odds/Game lines
|Via FanDuel Indiana Sportsbook||Spread||Total||Moneyline|
|HOU Texans||+2.5 (-105)||Over 38.5 (-110)||+130|
|IND Colts||-2.5 (-115)||Under 38.5 (-110)||-154|
|Via DraftKings Indiana Sportsbook||Spread||Total||Moneyline|
|HOU Texans||+2.5 (-100)||Over 38 (-110)||+125|
|IND Colts||-2.5 (-120)||Under 38 (-110)||-145|
Another Starting QB for the Colts
After coming in to relieve an injured Nick Foles during the Colts’ loss to the New York Giants on Sunday, Sam Ehlinger is set to take the helm of Indy’s offense for their last game of the season against Houston. Interim head coach Jeff Saturday disclosed Monday that Foles is dealing with a lot of pain from a rib injury and is unable to start in this crucial matchup.
With Ehlinger at the ready, the Colts will have their sights set on ending their dismal 2021 campaign on a high note, aiming for an important win against division rivals Houston. It remains uncertain whether Ehlinger can make up for what was an unfortunate year for Indianapolis – but if there ever was a chance for him to make his play style shine, it’s now.
Will Houston Get the Top Pick?
The Houston Texans are in a unique and enviable position. Last year they had what can be widely regarded as one of the best draft classes in franchise history, and this season has also yielded similar results. They currently need to lose only one more game in order to secure the first pick in next year’s draft, which would allow them to take a five-star recruit, Bryce Young – someone widely touted by football pundits as potentially the closest thing to a sure-fire franchise quarterback a team could hope for.
The analysts have done well thus far – based on limited data – when it comes to drafting quality players, putting them at a good starting point with their rebuild plans. However, there is still an added element of risk at this stage.
The Texas’ have yet to secure their final loss for the 2022-2023 season as their last game is against the Colts, who for many disappointed football fans have been one of the biggest letdowns of this season.
With both teams wanting to get a better draft pick, the Colts may have an easier way for this week.