The Colts are in the Super Bowl, and I couldn’t be happier. Well, that’s not true. I could be a LOT happier if it was the 18-0 Colts heading to the Super Bowl with a chance to achieve the first perfect season since the introduction of the 16 game regular season schedule. Instead, the 16-2 Colts will have a chance to win their 2nd Super Bowl in 4 seasons. A Super Bowl win would be great, but a team wins the Super Bowl every season. Nobody has gone 19-0.
The worst part about the Colts losing their final two games of the regular season is that they could have won those games easily. They had the Jets under control in the 3rd quarter of week 16 when they decided to take Peyton Manning out of the game. The Colts backups fell apart and the Jets won the game and went on to grab a wild card spot. Week 17 was against the Bills, one of the worst teams in the AFC. The Colts benched the better part of their team in the first quarter of that game.
The Saints certainly let up at the end of the regular season (losing their final 3 games), but not in the same way the Colts did. The Saints might not have won in week 15 even if they hadn’t already been assured a playoff and a first round bye. The Colts, on the other hand, showed the night-and-day difference between their starters and their backups. The league’s competition committee is already looking into ways to prevent teams like the Colts from giving up at the end of a regular season when they’ve got nothing but a perfect record to play for. If I was the coach of the Colts, I wouldn’t need the competition committee telling me what to do. My starters would have been out there all 16 games, playing for a perfect record AND for pride.
With the Colts down 13 points with less than 5 minutes remaining in the game last night against the Patriots, were there any Colts fans out there who really didn’t believe Peyton Manning would lead his team to yet another improbable comeback? The only thing that surprised me at the end of the game was the Patriots poor play-calling.
As they attempted to run down the clock, they were faced with a 3rd down and short around their own 30 yard line. Logic says run the ball. If they pick up the first down, it’s basically game over. If they fail to convert, at the very least they would have run the clock down to the 2 minute warning. Instead, they pass the ball incomplete. The clock stops. 4th down and short. Logic says punt the ball and force Peyton and company to go 70-80 yards in 2 minutes. It’s something the Colts are more than capable of doing, but it’s also a lot harder than going 30 yards for the touchdown. Instead, the Patriots go for it. They pass once again and come up just short of the first down. Colts ball. The rest, as they say, is history.
ESPN’s new power rankings are out, and the Colts sit atop the list with their 4-0 record. That’s up a spot from last week, and expect to see them repeat at #1 next week after a huge blowout win over the winless Tennessee Titans. The Colts defense has been the big surprise in the first quarter of the season, with some (including me) saying it might be the best Colts defense in the past 50 years.
A Madden video game simulation has predicted a big win for the Colts over the Seahawks this week. Peyton Manning throws for over 250 yards and 3 touchdowns in this game. Final score: Colts 31 – Seahawks 14
As this decades draws to a close, The Sporting News decided to award a player of the decade award to the top NFL star from the past 10 years. After much debate among the top 7 candidates, Peyton Manning won out in a close race with Tom Brady. Brady has the 3 Super Bowl rings compared to just one for Manning, but I think it’s a universal consensus that Brady was surrounded by much better players on offense and his team had a better defense year in and year out. In addition to 38,000+ passing yards, Manning has won the SN Player of the Year 3 times this decade.
The Colts are one of 9 undefeated teams in the NFL, and they were given a #3 ranking in ESPN.com’s weekly power rankings. They might have looked overmatched on defense last night, but they proved they can get a big play when they need it, and they also showed that they can prevent the big play from their opponent. It might not seem like a big victory when your defense gets pushed around like that, but it is.
I usually try to keep the chatter around here NFL related, but I’m sure there are at least a few readers who are Irish fans. I found a video of the game-winning touchdown on Saturday against Michigan St. Notice Golden Tate leaping into the Trojan marching band and nobody making any attempt to catch him. It was probably one of the greatest moment’s of Tate’s career, followed seconds later by the most embarrassing.
The Colts defense spent over 3 quarters of Monday night’s game on the field and showed almost no ability to halt the Dolphins and their Wildcat formation, but the Colts still managed to grab victory from the clutches of defeat with a 4 point win. The Colts became the first team in NFL history to hold the ball for less than a quarter of the game and still win thanks to some very big plays from their offense.
It was apparent right from the start the Colts were going to be exploiting holes in the Dolphins defense for big plays. On the first play from scrimmage, Peyton Manning connected with Dwight Clark for an 80-yard touchdown pass. It was the second time in Manning’s career that he’s started a game with an 80-yard score.
The Dolphins offense looked phenomenal against the Colts. They seemed to be gaining 6 or 7 yards a play at will, and would eat up 10 or more minutes of clock time while marching down the field as Manning and company sat helpless on the sideline. If last night’s game taught us anything, it’s that the Colts defense needs to get faster. Fast defense kills the Wildcat, and the Colts certainly were not close to killing the Wildcat last night.
See what seats are available for this game
The Colts and the Jets will reenact the third Super Bowl for the final Colts home game of the season on December 27, except this time the Colts will demolish the Jets and tack on one more loss to what is sure to be a miserable season. Tickets for this game are selling on the light side on the secondary market, with cheap seats going for under $50. I guess that’s because Colts fans know they will have more home games left in the season as they stampede through the playoffs.
The Colts have signed former Eagles wide receiver Hank Baskett to fill in for Anthony Gonzalez, who will be out for a few weeks. Baskett is a good pickup not only because of his solid receiving skills, but also because he’s married to Kendra Wilkinson, the empty-headed playmate featured on the reality show “The Girls Next Door”. Kendra should provide the Colts with the motivation they’ll need to remain a dominating force in the AFC, and I’d sure like to get a look at her midfield and end zone.