Game Recap: Tennessee Titans vs. Indianapolis Colts

Indianapolis last game of 2015 season

The Indianapolis Colts didn’t make it into the playoffs. But they won a game with two quarterbacks off the street. That should count for something.

 

In this, the last game of the season, the Colts showed that they had enough in their backbones to defeat a division rival, the Tennessee Titans 30-24. They will finish the season 8-8. The Titans will have first pick in the draft next year. Hopefully that will help their 3-13 record improve.

 

Like the Colts, the Titans were also down their star quarterback, Marcus Mariota. But, by the end of the season, it’s more about what a team can do with who’s still healthy, than what they planned pre-season. The Colts were able to pick up two quarterbacks, and cobble together a decent offensive front. The last game of the season turned into an audition for backup quarterback for Josh Freeman and Ryan Lindley. The Colts did something interested with the limited time they had to work with. Instead of trying to cram as many options as possible into the playbook, the offensive team split the job in to pieces. Giving Lindley the last two minute drill, and Morris the rest of the game. It shook up the Titans defense and proved fairly effective in creating points. Andrew Luck was still sidelined, which added to the number of quarterbacks with eyes and ears to help make calls for the offense.

 

The Colts defense, which has been improving throughout the late season, made a few key blocks and was able to stop the Titans from taking the momentum late in the 3rd quarter. The Tennessee offense was unable, like so many times this year, to convert on the key 3rd downs. Early in the game, it was a high-scoring for both teams. The Colts especially had a good early set of downs and drives. It what might be Pagano’s last game, the Colts showed their strength. Robert Mathis made sacks, Jerrell Freeman played extraordinarily well.

 

As of early Monday morning, the future of Colts head coach Chuck Pagano is up in the air. He’ll be meeting with owner Jim Irsay this morning. His contract is up this season. Many Colts fans see the general manager, Ryan Grigson as the real source of the problem. Regardless of his overall winning record, a hurt star quarterback, and problems with the GM, it seems as though only a Super Bowl ring would be able to keep him his job. He went 11-5 for his first three seasons. He’s gone to the playoffs for those three years as well. It seems like we should just let the man work, and give him a better o-line to protect his stars. The Colts players, like Robert Mathis, seem to be behind him. Awarding him what may be his final game ball at the end of yesterday’s game. And the city seems to be behind him as well. Pagano isn’t the only coach waiting to hear about their job security on this, “black Monday.” But in Indianapolis, it seems to be on the mind at the end of the season.

 

They needed a total of nine games to go their way in order to make the playoffs. Most importantly, the Houston Texans had to lose their game. They didn’t. The Texans ended the season with the better record and will move onto the playoffs as AFC South champs, with that coveted home-field advantage. Hopefully, they won’t hang a banner for this loss.

 

It’s hard to end a season this way. It’s been a crazy season for Colts fans. It seems like there should still be more Colts football to watch. If you’re still jonesing for football, the first playoff game will be January 9th. The Super Bowl is about a month away on February 7th. There are still tickets for Super Bowl 50 available if you’d like to go see that game in person.

 

But for now, we’ll keep wondering what this season might have looked like with a healthy quarterback and a solid o-line.

Game Recap: Houston Texans vs. Indianapolis Colts

There go our hopes. The Indianapolis Colts got knocked down by the Houston Texans 16-10. The Colts lost their opportunity at keeping their playoff spot nailed down. A sad, sad day in Indianapolis.

It’s a hard day for Colts fans when the pre-game tailgate is better than the game. But that’s been something of the recurring story this year. The Colts have been going wrong. The Colts will look good for a moment. Then, someone gets hurt. The Colts will have a chance. Then, they’ll blow it. Yesterday’s loss almost seemed a foregone conclusion.

 

Rather than speculate about whether or not Colts’ owner Jim Irsay would keep on coaches and staff past this year, the question has changed. The conversation now is centered around who would replace them. If that’s not a sign of how this season has gone, we don’t know what would be.

 

The Texans are now 7-7. The Colts, just 6-8. No one predicted this. Maybe someone with keen foresight could have seen how a lack of a good o-line leads to quarterbacks getting hurt. Play after play, they were getting pummeled. The injuries pile up. Especially late in an NFL season, it can be hard to stay healthy, but this number of injuries is rough on the team. Because of that, the bad kind of franchise records are starting to fall.

 

This was the first time the Houston Texans beat the Colts at home. Pretty much ever. What rubs salt in the already kidney-lacerated wound, is that the Colts were defeated by a third-string QB. One, Brandon Weeden, took over and helped the Texans gain their second-half victory.

 

Maybe the locker-room speeches aren’t up to par this season? The Colts have been consistently outscored in the third and fourth quarters. Even though this game finally saw the Colts take possession at the start of the second-half, they couldn’t seem to do anything. Or if they did get something rolling, a massive, major, terrible, no-good, bad-day, error would take it all back to where it started from. Ouch.

 

The Texans traditionally can’t find their game around the Colts. That looked like the kind of day they were going to have again, at least in the beginning. Vontae Davis had an early pick. Colts were intercepting the Texans to neutralize any threats. Anthony Castonzo was back. Back-up QB Matt Hasselbeck was back (though playing in pain.) It looked like the Colts could win.

 

Dontae Moncrief had the first touchdown of the game. Colts players like Trent Cole were making sacks. Quan Bray was making great runs off of punt returns. Pat McAfee was giving the Texans terrible field position. Kicker, Adam Vinateri was close to his 500th field goal. It seemed on the up-and-up. The score was 10-3 going into the half.

 

But the run game was still missing. The Colts couldn’t take advantage of Bill O’Brien’s team mistakes. The Texans upped their defense and produced solid third-down stops. Worst of all, the third quarter saw the loss of the fans. It was like they could feel the shifting tide. It got quiet.

 

Everyone was very aware of what this game meant. Playoff spot. AFC South champions. A chance to prove themselves. The Colts didn’t come through. They fumbled, threw interceptions at the worst possible moments, and left the AFC South a complicated mess. So, it’s not to say that the Colts can’t get a playoff spot. But it’s an uphill battle now.

 

The Colts have two more games. Only two more. They have one more on the road, against the beatable Miami Dolphins on Sunday, December 27th. If you’re going to be in Florida, tickets for the Colts vs. Dolphins game are on sale.

 

Then, the Colts have one more chance to prove themselves to the home crowd. The next game in Lucas Oil Stadium will be in 2016, January 3rd to be exact. Against the Tennessee Titans at 1:00 p.m. Tickets for the Titans vs. Colts game are up for grabs. Because it’s a Colts home game, there’s a Colts VIP Tailgate as well. We’d love to see you there! Discounted tickets are available if you buy a Colts ticket and a VIP Tailgate ticket together. Here’s hoping the force will be with the Colts next week.

Game Recap: Indianapolis Colts vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

Of all the games this season that have tested the strength of Colts fans, this was the worst. The Indianapolis Colts lost to the Jacksonville Jaguars 51-16. Ouch. Someone get the tissues and the band-aids.

Going into the game, the Colts were trying to regain a winning season record, and beat a divisional rival to cinch a playoff spot. Jacksonville were 4-8. This should have been a pretty basic game. The story Sunday should have been, Colts continue to win in the AFC South. Instead, Jacksonville dominated. This is the worst we’ve seen the Colts play. They just fell apart.

The first quarter, really the first half, the Colts seemed to be doing okay. Despite all the injuries. Phillip Dorsett returned, the defense was putting up spots and creating turnovers.  Then, Jacksonville started scoring. And scoring. And scoring. They made a 48-3 scoring run. The Colts lets this happen against one of the worst NFL teams, the Jaguars. Maybe Gregg Doyel is right, and this is rock-bottom.

But, as Chuck Pagano pointed out after the game, there were some positives about the first-half. The Colts didn’t look too bad. It all started when Matt Hasselbeck got strip-sacked for a touchdown late in the 2nd quarter. Then everything went downhills fast. The offense, the defense, special teams, coaching all failed. Where was the momentum to move forward and improve after the loss to the Steelers last week? The Colts just looked defeated. This was another week of the same thing. Bad Colts playing. Maybe they’ll get better after this game.

Really, who succeeds in the playoffs, and ultimately wins the Super Bowl, depends on who stays healthy the longest. And the Colts haven’t been able to do that. They’ve had to use their third-string QB. For a team that was supposed to come into the season as an offensive powerhouse, they’ve been anything but. If they do make it to the playoffs, maybe, and everyone is healthy, (looking at you Andrew Luck) there’s a chance they could still put up a good fight. Until, then, it’s about winning, one game at a time. And pulling yourselves together.

There are some bright spots though. Injured players will return. Pagano won’t let the team lose like this three weeks in a row. The Colts still have a shot at the playoff spot … It was a pretty nice day for December.

Also, next week is a home game. The Colts always do better at home. Cheer them on next week, because they’re going to need that home-town base. Show the team that Indianapolis supports the Colts win or lose, no matter what, because Colts fans are the greatest. Tickets for Texans vs. Colts are on sale, as well as the pre-game tailgate party from Bullseye Event Group. Combo game-day tickets and VIP tailgate tickets are still available.

Even after this loss, the latest of bad losses, keep Colts strong.

 

Game Recap: Indianapolis Colts vs. Pittsburgh Steelers

This season has been a bit of a let down. It’s early December. The Indianapolis Colts are still batting an average 6-6. They’ve just about run out of time to turn the season around. At this point, it’s going to be a battle to make it to the playoffs. That’s hard to accept.

 

 

The Colts played the Steelers yesterday in a Sunday Night Football, late-night game. They lost. Big time. 45-10 in Heinz Field, Pittsburgh. The first half was watchable, the second-half was just depressing. It’s hard not to say this is the start of the end for the Colts this season.

 

Maybe it started with Andrew Luck’s injury earlier this year. Or maybe the issues began before that. Maybe the problems can be traced to way back when the team was built for a one or two year success rather than a long-lasting, solid base. The older players the Colts picked up may still have a few good season left, but they’re also old. They get hurt more often, they’re just a little bit slower. And everyone seems injured. Castonzo, Dorsett, Freeman, Luck, Thornton. That’s a lot of players out. This is around the 5th defense starting line for the Colts to start. There’s no cohesion building or bonding of the linemen if everyone is currently shuffling. But even when the Colts started the season, it was still rough going. That’s why the Colts are running 6-6.

 

If the best part of watching a Colts game is the other’s team victory celebration (re: watching Antonio Brown jump a goal post) it can be tough to even keep watching, keep supporting, the Colts. But, Chuck Pagano’s brief, yet accurate statement in the post-game sums it all up, “They kicked our ass. Period.” It makes it easier to like Coach Chuck Pagano when he’s that direct. It seems like he’s aware there’s a problem. And we won’t let it happen again. That’s something we can get behind.

 

So what happened in this week’s game to lead to a blow-out? Matt Hasselbeck, who’s previously 3-0 run as quarterback was marred by an injury. At the start of the game it was a 6-5 team vs. a 6-5 team. That means the Steelers are already out of playoff contention. The Colts are still on top of the AFC South, but all other teams leading the division at this point are 10-2.

 

The game started in a bit of an odd fashion. By 2:42 in the first half there had been three turnovers. There were more field goals than turnovers early in the game. The Colts defense stayed in the game keep the score even, but then the Steelers broke away, and the Colts had no answer. Against the Colts best corners and defensive players, the Steelers were scoring. That was hard to watch. It takes the true fans, the real fans to stick with the game when it’s hopeless.

 

The Colts play the Jacksonville Jaguars in a suddenly vital and important AFC South next Sunday at 1:00 p.m. (that’s December 13th) If you’re in the Jacksonville area, or are looking to travel somewhere warm to support the Colts on the road, Colts tickets are still available for next week.

Game Recap: Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Indianapolis Colts

The Colts look good. It’s week 12. It’s about time. The 40-year old Matt Hasselbeck carried the Indianapolis Colts to a nice victory over 21-year old Jameis Winston. Now, the Colts are playing with a winning record 6-5. Finally.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers play a fast game, and in this case, the Colts were up to the challenge. This might not have been the most exciting game of the Colts season, but that’s fine. It’s a win. It’s still possible to get that 11-5 season that has defined Chuck Pagano’s tenure.

 

The Colts are starting to play their best football with their backup QB. Hasselbeck is accurate and getting rid of the ball quickly. But, he is also equally good at showing his experience in the decisions he makes while in the pocket. He will take his time, when he knows he has it, and make the right throw. His experience shown through this game, especially in comparison to the young’un Winston, who had trouble converting late in the game. Hasselbeck stayed in control, and late in the game, knew he was in control. He was familiar with the protection he was getting and comfortable with the sort of defense the Bucs presented.

 

There were few errors, or what Hasselbeck calls his “Favre Moments.” He may not have wanted the weight of the team resting on his shoulders, but he seems comfortable with it. He’s 4-0 as a 40 year old starter. The media has made a lot of his age, but really. That’s impressive. It deserves the attention. The Colts themselves also didn’t shoot themselves in the foot, as has been usual this season. They didn’t rack up a high number of costly penalties. Instead the Buccaneers had that issue with 12. Without these penalties, it could have looked like a very different game.

 

The game opened with exchanges of field goals. There were no three-and-outs. Both teams were exchanging points for points, but having trouble once it came to the red-zone. After the Bucs late second-quarter touchdown, the Colts came back after halftime. They made adjustments and played a better game. And it led to a great win. If this is what the Colts look like playing in a rhythm, it’s amazing to think of what they could look like if they get in gear with Andrew Luck.

 

Hasselbeck found WR Donte Moncrief to make those tough, but necessary conversions on third down. And as always T.Y. Hilton had a good game too. The run game had trouble, which is why Hasselbeck had to step up. They were getting anywhere, so Matt turned to passing. Hasselbeck seems to find one go-to receiver a game. Someone he clicks with. In this game it was Moncrief. Maybe this sudden surge came from Reggie Wayne’s appearance in Lucas Oil Stadium. Maybe the Colts WRs wanted to show off. Whatever it was, it’s nice to see the Colts in motion again. All in all, it was a nice Sunday for Colts fans.

 

Looking forward, the Colts face something of a threat next week against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Heinz Field on December 6th (that’s next Sunday) at 8:30 p.m. The Colts sometimes have trouble against the Steelers, but, this is a winnable game. You can buy tickets for the Colts vs. Steelers game, if you want to watch the game in person. Just remember to bring your coat! For those of us not there the game will be broadcast on NBC. Can’t wait!

Game Recap: Indianapolis Colts vs. Atlanta Falcons

Never stop watching the Colts. You think they’re going to lose a game because they’re down by 14 points? They’ll make a comeback. Believe. The Colts are playing with a backup QB? They’ll be fine. They’ll do whatever it takes to find that win, on the road, against a team with a winning record, down their star player.

 

 

Twice they were down double digits, with some of their biggest names sidelined. But, the Colts came out of a bye week with a big win. Huge win. They could potentially hold to their 11-5 record, these next six games are winnable. One game at a time, as Coach Pagano is fond of saying.

Backup QB Matt Hasselbeck had a bit of a rough start. Hasselbeck says he was trying things early, that failed, also known as an interception on the first play of the game. But it was through the grit of the team that they pulled out the win. They did give it all they had for 60 minutes. The old guys, the young guys, all the guys played to make this a true team win.

The Indianapolis Colts finally won a game they should have won, they beat the Atlanta Falcons by a beautiful field-goal. It was career game 300 for kicker Adam Vinatieri. He continues to prove his worth no matter his age or his gray hair. He kicked another game-winning ball through the uprights to put the Colts ahead 24-21 with less than two minutes left in the game. Julio Jones did give the Colts a scare, and he played a pretty good game. But it was the relentlessness of the players that sealed the game.

It wasn’t a pretty game by any means. There were turnovers on both sides, but neither team really seemed to be able to capitalize on the other team’s mistakes. What finally sealed the deal was Coby Fleener’s last second interception of the hail-mary pass from Falcons’ QB Matt Ryan. That was Coby’s first interception. But, it was truly a whole team effort. SS Clayton Geathers played a good game, Ahmad Bradshaw finally played well, and it was good to see. It was good to see the team come together.

It was tempting to give up hope one of the two times the Colts fell behind. It would have been easier to turn the game off and call it a day. It would have been simple to turn off the TV when Matt threw that first terrible pass. But, the Colts have started finding ways to win. It might be possible they’re on a roll. But, don’t say that too loudly, we don’t want to jinx it.

Next week the Indianapolis Colts will play the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. They can win that game. It’s a home game against another 5-5 team. Wouldn’t it be great to see the Colts rack up three wins in a row? If you would like to go to that game, we have Colts tickets. And because it’s a home game we’re tailgating at the Crane Bay Event Center three hours before kickoff. Come to the best pregame in Indianapolis.

And, as always, go Colts!

Game Recap: New Orleans Saints vs. Indianapolis Colts

The Colts remarkable rally wasn’t enough. Andrew Luck couldn’t overcome his first half deficiencies. Again it was the penalties, the turnovers, the interceptions, and the poor defense that led to an insurmountable 27-21 victory for the New Orleans Saints.

This is the point now, where Colts fans start to wonder if they’ll be saying, “those early season games when Andrew was bad.” Or instead “the beginning of a terrible year for the Colts.” They’re are still perched on top of their division in the AFC South, ensuring a play at home playoff game. But, it’s not a position that seems earned.

This game was indicative of the season thus far. The Colts have a great moment or two, and the crowd says this is the Colts we expected to see. Then they shoot themselves in the hooves. The Colts can’t make it past three and outs. They come in, they go right back out. It’s happened over and over this season. That’s how this game started too. The Saints were stuck, then the Colts drive went nowhere. Two early challenges from the Saints head coach Sean Payton went in the Colts favor, but it didn’t seem to matter.

The Saints took an early lead. Then Luck threw an interception. And, the Colts had trouble getting anything started against the worst defense in the league. That does not bode well for any weeks after this one. The Colts went down 20. And Andrew Luck didn’t have a completion for a solid chunk of that first half. It wasn’t the expected tough and gritty, or even angry Colts viewers expected to see after that tough loss to New England in the previous week. The first time the Colts got into Saints territory was with 38 seconds left on the clock of the first half.

The second half was something of a different story. Luck threw a career long 87-yard catch to T.Y. Hilton after his defender fell down. That happened again later in the 3rd with a 46 yard catch by Hilton. Then it seemed like the Colts would get something going, and then get a holding penalty. They haven’t been consistent. They haven’t been sharp. They gave fans momentary hope, but then the defense couldn’t make a stop when they needed it most. They stayed six points down.

What’s been frustrating about this season has been how each game seemed winnable. If this changed, or if that call went the other way, if this play had never been run. There would be a chance. They could have found a way to win. Instead, the Colts hold a losing record. Whether it’s front office issue or a mental problem. Something needs to change to see the tide go the other way. Because it’s bad when your punter is playing better than anyone else on the team.

It’s not like the games will get any easier this season. The Panthers, with their perfect season, are next up. And the Colts are on the road. Believing in blue seems to be getting harder and harder. The faith that Andrew Luck can somehow make it happen in the fourth quarter, despite the odds, despite the pressure, seems like an old dream now.

The Indianapolis Colts take on the Carolina Panthers in Charlotte, North Carolina for Monday Night Football November 2nd at 8:30 p.m. and broadcast on ESPN. If you’d like to support the Colts on the road, check here for Colts Tickets.

Game Recap: Indianapolis Colts vs. New England Patriots

Colts fans seemed pretty resigned to this loss before the game even started. They just wanted a semi-close game. NBC wanted a good game. And we had both.

Last night turned on to two big plays. It’s disappointing that those didn’t fall in the Colts favor. But, still, the game against the Patriots came down to two moments. It wasn’t a blowout as predicted. It was within the power of the Colts to win, and more importantly, they showed that to the fans. This game proved what needed to be proven this week. The Colts can stay with the Patriots.

The Indianapolis Colts led by Andrew Luck, for the first time in two weeks, played a very good first half. They gave all the fans hope. It was a nice feeling. Luck threw for the first touchdown of the game, and played a faster offense that seemed to help keep the Patriots defense at bay. After Julian Edelman appeared to break a finger, he then had some troubles catching the ball. A throw intended for him was picked off by Mike Adams and run back for a touchdown. The game was an exciting one. The lead changed back and forth possession after possession. The Colts were ahead 21 – 20 at the half.

But the Colts were also the incompetent Colts we’ve come to know this season. The second half was frustration upon frustration. The second-half started with something the Patriots do well, which is defer the opening kick so that they have possession of the ball in the final play of the first half and then the first play of the second half. This added to the good half-time adjustments Bill Belichick and created a tougher opponent.

The first big turning point came when the Colts fell behind, and needed an on-side kick recovery. For all intents and purposes it looked like Donte Moncrief recovered the ball, but the referees called it for the Patriots. And the Patriots took advantage of the field position to score and advance the lead.

Then came the embarrassing moment that puzzled everyone, everywhere. That strange trick-play gone wrong on the Colts own 37. Chuck Pagano took full responsibility for this one. The company line became “miscommunication.” Whatever it was, it hurts to watch. It would be easier to see the replays of this if it didn’t matter so much to the outcome. Patriots got the ball close to the goal, and converted. And that was the game.

Andrew Luck shook the rust off and looked sharp the first half of the game. He over threw a couple throws that might have made the difference in the game, but it was good to see him play. The Colts had the same problems they’ve always had against the Pats. They couldn’t stop the run or even hold it to under six yards a carry. They could move the ball, but couldn’t score. And they couldn’t put pressure on Tom Brady. They’re still not the team they need to be to beat the Patriots despite all the off-season moves. The Patriots out-executed the Colts, as Andrew Luck said in the post-game conference. It was true.

When the Colts next play the Patriots, assuming both win their respective divisions, it will be in the playoffs. It will be a similar situation to last year. Colts fans desperately hoping for vindication, and the Patriots bringing a tough game that has a bad tendency to run over Colts. Because of the woes of the AFC South, the Colts are likely to have a winning season even if they do lose to big powerhouse teams, like the Broncos, Patriots, or Steelers.

Next week’s game against the New Orleans Saints will see Andrew Luck face up against a Drew Brees at home in Lucas Oil Stadium. Hopefully we’ll be able to watch the Colts of the first half of the game against New England be tough, strong, and capable against the Saints on Sunday. It seems unlikely that the Colts will let another two games in a row slip away from them, so the Colts will tally one more victory. Find Colts vs. Saints tickets here!

Because it’s a home game, we’ve got a VIP Pre-Game Tailgate! Doors open three hours before kickoff next Sunday, October 25th at 10:00 a.m. at the Crane Bay Event Center in downtown Indianapolis. Hope to see you there!

 

Game Recap: Indianapolis Colts vs. Houston Texans

It’s coming together. The Indianapolis Colts need to have some sort of difficulty to overcome to play good football. This time it wasn’t only Andrew Lucks’ injury. But backup quarterback, Matt Hasselbeck was violently ill as well. The rallying call brought the team together to take down the Houston Texans 27-20.

 

They play at their best when the cards are stacked against them. And when they’ve got something to fight for. This game made an NFL record 16 straight division wins. It also marked Andre Johnson’s return to Houston. The team appeared to set him up for the big plays. Johnson made them. He caught two touchdowns, the first of the season. He looked like all the reason’s GM Ryan Grigson picked him up in the first place.

Johnson looked good, and the big story of the late-night, Thursday game – Matt Hasselbeck looked good. All the old guys turned out in full force to prove their worth: Hasselbeck, Gore, Johnson, and Vinatieri,. The Colts are the oldest in the NFL, but that doesn’t mean a thing to the guys playing out on the field. The kicker Adam Vinatieri, like the QB, is over 40 years old. That doesn’t mean he can’t get the job done. And do it well. Hasselbeck threw no interceptions. The Colts had no turnovers. Even though the Colts defense allowed 444 yards, Houston couldn’t convert.

It was mostly a game of penalties. Whether the refs are calling more penalties on purpose or not, the big drives by Houston were stopped by mistakes on their part or costly penalties. 13 penalties to be precise. Those kept the Colts drives going. Those stopped Houston from a good 7 – 10 points. It brings up questions about the Texans. If they can’t beat a beat-up team, with a sick backup QB, who according to Pagano had IVs and blankets draped over him two days before, and they can’t make good use of their star J.J. Watt, then what good are they?

Houston switched out QBs during the game. Head Coach, Bill O’Brien seemed unable to commit to Ryan Mallett. He was in. Then he was replaced with Brian Hoyer. Leaving a very angry looking QB on the sidelines. On the plus side for the Texans, Jadeveon Clowney played the run well. And the Colts had no answer for the go-to-man, DeAndre Hopkins. And a hail Mary pass connected in the touchdown with one second left in the first half to embarrass the Colts and breathe life in the Texans offense.

Finally, though, that touted Colts diverse offensive showed up. Frank Gore ran well. Johnson caught well. Mike Adams has two interceptions. Pep Hamilton called a good game. Pagano had a good game. J.J. Watt was pretty quiet. David Parry fought well against the blocks. The center blocks looked good. T.Y. Hilton had a couple clutch catches. All in all. Not too bad. Finally.

So what’s it going to take to see the Colts at their best with Andrew Luck throwing? Another major catastrophe that can be mended by a stirring Coach Chuck Pagano speech? Whatever it is, here’s hoping the magic, and the Luck, holds out. The Colts play the New England Patriots next. Their big rivals; the team they always seem to fall apart against. Maybe if the Colts keep Matt Hasselbeck on it’ll be the old, tough, scrappy guys against the shiny, undefeated away team. Maybe Luck will keep up Hasselbeck’s two week, no-interception record. Maybe the Indianapolis fans will finally see a victory against a the Pats.

Any way the coin toss falls, you’re going to want to be at that game. We’ve got Colts tickets. And we’re partying before hand with a VIP Tailgate. Because the Colts still have a chance at the win.

Game Recap: Indianapolis Colts vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

Yes, the Indianapolis Colts still have major issues. Yes, they barely squeaked by against Jacksonville. Yes, that should have been an easy win. But, after three frustrating weeks, Colts fans finally got to see a good game.

 

Without the star QB, and the presence he brings, the Colts felt like a rag tag, thrown-together team. Nothing from the offense looked sharp. But, this made the game fun in the way only overtime, heart-attack inducing games can be. It’s easier to root for someone who is just trying to make it however they can.

At the same time it was grueling watch. Minute after minute, the score stayed the same. The Colts defense proved themselves again by successfully stopping any Jacksonville points in the second-half. But, then again, the Colts weren’t scoring touchdowns in the third or fourth quarter either. The game went into overtime tied at 13-13.

It looked over for the home team, as a successful late drive from Jacksonville put them in field goal range. But the kicker from Jacksonville, Jason Myers, flubbed. So the 40-year old Matt Hasselbeck had a chance put together a successful drive into field goal range and let Adam Vinatieri, newly minted as the Colts all-time leading scorer, kick the winning field goal.

The big story from the week was first whether or not Andrew Luck would play because of a sore shoulder. And after he missed practices during the week, the story tuned into how backup quarterback Hasselbeck would do. Unexpectedly, he put up better numbers than Luck has been showing lately. The old guy didn’t do too bad.

Hasselbeck made a good point in his candid post-game interview. Those two final field goal attempts the Jacksonville kicker missed were due in large part to the volume of the fans in the stadium. If this had been an away game, it probably would have swung the other way.

The theory goes that Luck took the time off to heal, so he would be better for this Thursday’s game against the tougher divisional opponent the Houston Texans. Hopefully along with his recovery, we’ll get to see a stronger Andrew Luck. One who isn’t throwing interceptions. An Andrew Luck who isn’t hesitating, but embodying the future face of the of football he seems to have become.

The Colts aren’t afforded much downtime after this win. They play the Houston Texans October 8th, that’s this Thursday, at 8:25 p.m. in NRG Stadium. If you’d like to travel to see that game, check for Indianapolis Colts tickets. Otherwise, the game will be broadcast locally on CBS and on NFL Network nationally.

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