Andrew Luck's retirement leads to Colts' AFC title and Super Bowl odds plummeting

 Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck shocked the NFL world on Saturday night, when he took to the podium following the Colts' Week 3 preseason matchup against the Chicago Bears to announce that he was retiring from football

The news broke during the second half of action -- while Luck was standing on the sideline -- which led to an uneasy environment in Lucas Oil Stadium. As Luck made his way off the field for the final time, he was booed by his home fans. While this was not the send-off the 2018 NFL Comeback Player of the Year deserved, Colts fans were upset that their Super Bowl aspirations were seemingly dashed. 

The following morning, we saw quite the shift in Vegas when it came to the Colts' 2019 odds. While the divisional odds naturally saw an adjustment, it's clear that sportsbooks have changed their perceptions of the Colts and their potential as a team due to Luck's retirement. 

Westgate SuperBook adjusted the Colts' Super Bowl odds from 12/1 all the way to 60/1. Their AFC Conference championship odds also took a hit, with them shifting from 6/1 to 30/1. 

It's understandable that many would now be hesitant to predict Indianapolis to make a deep postseason run, but Westgate SuperBook is even hesitant to say that the Colts will find themselves playing past Week 17. The Colts' playoffs prop was once set at Yes -200, No +170 -- but is now Yes +240, No -300. Additionally, the Colts season win total of 9.5 (-140) shifted to just 7.5 (-130). 

The Colts were expected to compete for an AFC championship this season. Luck was clearly an elite quarterback surrounded by recently-upgraded weapons and protected by a young yet talented offensive line. The Colts also appeared to have one of the best up-and-coming defenses in the NFL -- led by second-year linebacker Darius Leonard, who became the first rookie to lead the NFL in tackles since Luke Kuechly did in 2012. 

The quarterback is the most important position in football, but the Colts' new leader is no slouch. Luck's replacement, Jacoby Brissett, has long been considered one of the better backups in the NFL. When Luck missed the entire 2017 season with his shoulder injury, Brissett played all 16 games and threw for 3,098 yards, 13 touchdowns and seven interceptions. The Colts went just 4-12 that year, but they did not have the talent this 2019 squad does. It could be worse. 

Maybe that year of starting experience will come in handy for him. Brissett knows what it's like to be a starter in this league and is ready to prove that there's no doubt about his potential as a signal caller.

So while it may be easy to forget about the Colts as a Super Bowl contender, it may be too early to cross them out as a playoff team. The AFC South has proved to be one of the more unpredictable divisions in the NFL, and Brissett is capable of leading Indianapolis to a winning record. 

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