Even with a healthy Andrew Luck, Colts need a lot to be contenders again

The Colts need a lot more than a healthy Andrew Luck to be contenders again. AP Photo/Michael Conroy

Here's a look at the Super Bowl prospects of the Indianapolis Colts, who finished the season 4-12.

Westgate odds to win Super Bowl LIII: 40-1

Lots of work to do: New coach to go with a general manager hired in 2017? Check. A healthy franchise quarterback? That's the goal. A lot of salary-cap space? Having almost $85 million in cap space should be enough to acquire some talented players. A top-three draft pick? They have that, too.

But even with all those things in their favor, the Colts have a lot of work ahead of them in order to try to catch the rest of the AFC. They're no longer the best team in the AFC South, a division they owned at one time. Jacksonville and Tennessee were significantly better than them last season.

Other than hoping Luck (shoulder) returns healthy after missing the 2017 season, the Colts have a laundry list of needs in order to improve what ended up being one of the worst rosters in the NFL last season -- partially due to injuries and partially due to a lack of talent.

They need a primary running back because Frank Gore is a free agent and will be 35 years old in May. They also have to get T.Y. Hilton help at receiver. Donte Moncrief and Kamar Aiken, two underperforming receivers who are the No. 2 and No. 3 players at the position, are each free agents.

And then there's the offensive line, the same offensive line that was continually poor during Luck's first six seasons. They could be looking for two guards and a right tackle during the offseason. You can't overlook the fact that center Ryan Kelly missed nine games last season due to a foot injury and concussion last season, either.

The defense, as has been the case over the past six seasons, was near the bottom of the league, finishing 30th last season. The Colts' top two cornerbacks, Rashaan Melvin and Pierre Desir, are both free agents and there's a need for an upgrade at middle linebacker. Safety Malik Hooker had his rookie season cut short due to a torn ACL in Week 7.

That's why it’s easy to understand why the Colts have lot of work to do to get back to the playoffs for the first time since 2014.