INDIANAPOLIS —The Indianapolis Colts are continuing to fly under the radar.
The National Football League this week announced the top 10 players for the upcoming finale for the NFL Network's "Top 100 Players of 2018" show, officially confirming that no Colts players will be among the 100 best players in the league as "voted on by the players themselves."
It's the first time since the "NFL Top 100" series began in 2011 that no Colts players have been selected to the annual list.
The fact that there was no mention of any Colts players this year should come as no huge surprise, however, as these types of lists are often centered around the "what have you done for me lately?" narrative.
Players voted for the "NFL Top 100 Players of 2018" list towards the end of the 2017 season, when the Colts were on their way to a 4-12 record, and the simple fact is three other teams who struggled last season will also go without a representative on this year's list: the Chicago Bears (5-11), the New York Jets (5-11) and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-11).
This year's "NFL Top 100" list is also just another example of how much this Colts team is being brushed aside on more of a national scale — which is perfectly fine to first-year head coach Frank Reich.
During OTAs last month, Reich was asked what he made out of being ranked 32nd in the league in a recent ESPN power ranking, and said, "I think we take note, but we don't go crazy on that right now."
"At this point, we're focused on who we got in the building and how we're going to get better," Reich continued. "Now is really not too much time for bulletin board material."
Looking forward to 2018, the Colts appear primed to surprise some naysayers, which could very well land them a couple of names on the "NFL Top 100 Players of 2019" show.
Their 20-28 record over the last three seasons led to a complete rebuild and that led to the opportunity to acquire some young, potentially elite talent such as defensive backs Malik Hooker and Quincy Wilson, as well as rookie guard Quenton Nelson.
The Colts, of course, also still have proven Pro Bowl-caliber veteran talent in tight end Jack Doyle, wide receiver T.Y. Hilton, quarterback Andrew Luck and kicker Adam Vinatieri.
Recently, former NFL offensive lineman Geoff Schwartz of SB Nation wrote about the Colts being one of a few teams who could turn things around in a hurry in 2018. General manager Chris Ballard being in Year 2 of his rebuild and the hiring of an offensive-minded head coach in Reich are two of the more noteworthy catalysts, but the return of a healthy Luck would undoubtedly be the biggest.
If Luck returns and reminds people of the blue-chip talent that he was before missing the entire 2017 season, that should jog people's memories.
Winning is the ultimate magnifying glass in sports, after all.