The Indianapolis Colts entered Week 18 with a very simple playoff clinching scenario: beat the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Win and in.
All they had to do was beat the Jacksonville Jaguars.
The team with the worst record in the NFL.
The team that lost by 40 points last weekend.
The team that was 15.5-point home underdogs.
It didn’t happen.
The Colts failed to beat the Jaguars.
And they were officially eliminated from the AFC playoff picture when the Pittsburgh Steelers beat the Baltimore Ravens.
In fairness, Jacksonville has somewhat inexplicably been a house of horrors for indy. The Colts haven’t won a road game against the Jags since 2014.
But it’s not even like the Colts got edged out in a close game. They were dominated by the team that will own the No. 1 overall pick in the NFL Draft for the second year in a row.
The Colts’ ineptitude is the Philadelphia Eagles’ gain.
Had Indy made the playoffs, the Colts’ 2022 first-round pick owed to Philly from the Carson Wentz trade would’ve been finished somewhere between No. 19 and No. 32, pending the team’s playoff finish.
With the Colts missing the postseason, however, the pick will be no worse than No. 18 overall.
Bringing it back to Wentz, he was an absolute disaster for the Colts in Jacksonville. He completed just 58.6% of his attempts for 185 yards (6.4 average), 1 TD, 1 INT, and a 74.6 passer rating.
Wentz’s one score came in garbage time. And his passing numbers don’t show that he had a really bad fumble that was recovered by the Jags. (Not to mention another pick that was fortunately ruled incomplete.)
Watching a meltdown like that, one can only be thankful that the Eagles were able to fleece the Colts for a 2021 third-round pick and a 2022 first-round pick. As a reminder, the Eagles used Indy’s third last year to move up from No. 12 to No. 10 to select DeVonta Smith.
The Eagles kindly thank Wentz and the Colts for their help.