The Colts Re-Watch: Week 6 vs. Houston Texans
Each week, I will head back to the computer to re-watch the Indianapolis Colts’ previous game – sometimes multiple times – to help pick up on some things I might have missed the first go-around while watching live.
- On Andrew Luck's second-quarter interception, if all turnovers are reviewed "upstairs", I've got to wonder why it wasn't overturned or more time was taken in the review. The Colts had a timeout to burn, so why would Chuck Pagano not just take his final timeout of the half there and state his case to the referees to get it reviewed further? When Texans safety Robert Nelson caught the ball, it appeared to hit the turf in between his arms as he fell to the ground. The ball could clearly be seen changing direction after coming in contact with the ground.
- Shout out to Frank Gore, who picked his way through holes to get the Colts' first 100-yard game in the last 61 games (including playoffs). He sliced and diced through Houston's front seven and showed that he's still got it and can carry the load four four-plus quarters.
- The Colts aren't getting a ton of production from Josh Ferguson, as they're just doing a lot of the same things with him; run him up the gut, and get the ball to him on delayed screen passes. That might've worked in college, but in the NFL, he needs to get out in space. Design some bubble screens or slants for him. They might get more out of him for it. They pass the ball to Gore out of the backfield on screens, but unless he's already got a good angle on defenders (rare), he's going down on first contact. The short passing game with the RB's can work if they design it better. And what about Ferguson on some wheel routes?
- Chester Rogers is developing into a really nice receiver, and the Colts would be wise to not ignore that. The politics of the team won't allow for Rogers to supplant former first-round pick Phillip Dorsett, but once Donte Moncrief, Dorsett and Rogers are all healthy, it'd be hard to argue that Rogers wouldn't still deserve playing time. With Quan Bray now landing on season-ending Injured Reserve, that might just happen.
- The Colts' run defense is just brutal. There were big holes opened right through the middle, often off-tackle. Lamar Miller broke it outside with ease as well. He is a really good back, and I knew this is the type of game he'd have, but he's only the latest in a line of backs to kill the Colts. Between Ameer Abdullah, Theo Riddick, C.J. Anderson, Melvin Gordon, T.J. Yeldon, Jordan Howard and Miller, they collectively averaged 19.4 touches for 122.4 yards and 1.1 touchdowns per game.
- The Colts finally got a sack from Robert Mathis, and it was his patented slap-strip-sack at that. He lined up real wide off of the right tackle and got an outstanding jump on the snap. He beat Miller in the backfield en route to Brock Osweiler.
- Fellow outside linebacker Akeem Ayers showed that he is deserving of more playing time. He was credited with 10 defensive snaps according to Pro Football Focus. In those snaps, he noticeably got to Osweiler on multiple occasions, though he did not register any sacks.
- All-Pro cornerback Vontae Davis played like his All-Pro self in shadowing Houston's DeAndre Hopkins. He kept him in check throughout the game until Osweiler started finding Hopkins on some shorter stuff in the fourth quarter. Rashaan Melvin also played pretty well in Patrick Robinson's absence.
- If the defense is going to improve at all, Geathers staying healthy will be a big part of it. He's been arguably their most dependable tackler.
- And now, we've gotten to the dreaded coaching gaffe of the week. On 4th-and-inches with 0:53 left in the third quarter, up by just four points and at the 8-yard line, Luck lined up in the shotgun for a pass rather than going heavy and trying to slam the ball to move the chains. When no one was open, Houstons' Whitney Mercilus sacked Luck. Pagano later defended the playcall.
- What would the Colts do without Adam Vinatieri? Seriously. Normal kickers don't make 40 in a row.
- With just over seven minutes left, the Colts allowed Osweiler to turn into Joe Montana, and Miller to channel his inner Roger Craig.
- With the Colts offense at their own 12.5-yard line with 2:28 left, Luck faked the handoff left to Gore and bootlegged to the right. Rogers broke open just slightly at the 32-yard line, but Luck didn't pull the trigger and instead took a sack. He could've also just thrown it away, but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
- With 0:49 left, the Colts allowed the Texans' game-tying touchdown, 26-yard touchdown up the right seam to CJ Fiedorowicz. Colts ballhawking safety Mike Adams took a gamble and went for the interception rather than battling the pass itself, and it cost them the surrendered touchdown.
This Sunday, the Colts travel down to Nissan Stadium to take on the Tennessee Titans. The game is at 1:00pm EST on CBS.
Jake Arthur is the AFC South Division Manager, Indianapolis Colts Team Manager, Assistant Director of NFL Content and a Featured Analyst for Pro Football Spot. He is also a member of the Professional Football Writers of America. Follow @JakeArthurPFS on Twitter as well as on Facebook, Google+ and FanCred.
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