Colts vs Steelers Preview

How many of you remember the 1995 AFC Championship game?  I know I do.  It’s the first thought that comes into my mind when I hear the Colts are playing the Steelers.  I really hate Kordell Stewart still to this day, and I wish Aaron Bailey would have been able to jump just a few inches higher.  However,  times have changed.  The Steelers are no longer the perennial powerhouse they once where in my younger years.  They may not have Greg Lloyd, Levon Kirkland, Yancey Thigpen or Neil O’Donnell, but they still have weapons on the field.

The Colts have only defeated the Steelers twice since that AFC Championship game and all but one have been very close.  At this point we’re all saying “Nick Harper, run the other way!!!”

In 2014, things are complety differeny.  The Colts have the dominant defense coming into this game and the top-ranked offense in the NFL.  The Steelers are not bottom dwellers either.  Their offense, per NFL.com, is ranked 8th in total offense and is 9th in rushing with 128.6 yard/game.  That may strike fear in some Colts fans since our rush defense ranks 24th in the NFL per NFL.com.  They are only giving up just over 96 yards a game but their total rushing attempts against them is very low allowing for the low yardage.

There are a few things in the game the Colts MUST do if they want to keep the winning streak going: Continue reading

Colts Defense Obliterates Bengals

For the first time since December 28, 2008, the Indianapolis Colts pitched a shutout.

The Colts (5-2) offense seemed shaky at times with drops and turnovers, but it was the defense that was the aggressor in this game which resulted in a 27-0 demolition of the Cincinnati Bengals.   Who Dey What?

Andrew Luck proved once again why he should be the leading candidate for league MVP at this point in the season. Despite a few errant throws and numerous drops by his receivers, Luck managed to throw for 344 yards and a pair of touchdowns and zero interceptions.

Luck was aided by the best rushing performance so far this season (171 yards). T-Rich and Bradshaw each averaged better than 5 yards per carry as they combined for 129 yards. Boom Herron added another 37 yards on 5 carries late in the fourth quarter when the game’s outcome was already determined.

TY Hilton was marvelous for the 2nd consecutive game with 107 yards on 7 catches.

Let’s tear off the Band-aid really quick and talk about where the Colts failed – fumbles. Luck appeared to have properly placed the ball in the arms of T-Rich, but the ball was never secured which resulted in a fumble. Bradshaw also was responsible for a lost fumble. Fumbles cost the Colts the game against Philly and luckily the Bengals played with zero effort yesterday or else they could have been costly again. But whenever the Colts turned the ball over – it was the defense who pulled the Colts out of the fire.

The Bengals managed a laughable 135 total yards of offense and did not even cross midfield until the 4th quarter. Andy Dalton – the NFL’s latest $100 million quarterback – looked more like a redshirt freshman making his first career start. He completed just 18 of 38 passes for 126 yards and was under constant pressure all afternoon. In fact, it was a sack by Zack Kerr which secured the shutout. Dalton’s QBR for the day: 7.9!

Giovani Bernard, one of the league’s premier running backs thus far, was completely squashed. He only managed 17 yards on 7 carries.

To say the Colts’ defense dominated the Bengals is an understatement. Yes, the Bengals were without AJ Green, one of the best receivers in the league, but he also missed last week’s game and the Bengals still managed to score 37 points. Yesterday – ZERO.

Coming into 2014 most fans were leery of the defense and were worried there would be pressure on the offense to score 40 points a game. I think after yesterday’s performance most fans should be walking with an extra step in their giddy-up today as I think it is fair to say that the Colts have one of the better defenses in the league.

Coming into yesterday, the Bengals were averaging 26.8 points per game, and they looked completely overwhelmed right from the start.

According to ESPN.com, the Colts have the 5th best pass defense and 9th best rush defense – seriously, when is the last time that has been the case? Ever since Peyton Manning was our QB, the Colts offense has always been the focal point of the organization – but now the scale may be tipping in favor of the defense. We know the offense can put up points – but now I’m more anxious for their next game just to see what our top-10 defense can do.

The Colts appear to be clicking on all cylinders on both sides of the ball right now. Three weeks ago, the “experts” said the Bengals were one of the best teams in the league. I think it is safe to say that the Bengals are completely overrated. The Patriots – despite the drubbing of these very same Bengals two weeks ago – are still far away from a perfect team. So, it looks like the Colts and Broncos are destined for a rematch in the AFC Championship game. Book it!

The Colts will put their five-game winning streak on the line next Sunday when they travel to Pittsburgh. Kickoff set for 4:25 EST.

Week 7 Preview: Colts vs Bengals

The Indianapolis Colts host the Cincinnati Bengals at Lucas Oil Stadium this Sunday at 1pm.  The Colts improved to 4-2 last Thursday after beating the Texans and currently have a 4 game win streak. The Bengals are 3-1-1. Cincinnati looked dominant by blowing out of the gates and starting the season 3-0, but have been struggled recently with a blowout loss to the Patriots and last week they tied with the Panthers.

As the Broncos look to be the #1 team in the AFC and experts disappointingly,  although reasonably, predict the Patriots 2nd, many think that the 3rd spot will be filled by either the Bengals or your very own Colts. With that being said let’s take a look and try to break down the game plan for this Sunday’s game.

Andrew Luck has been clicking on all cylinders and is playing like one of the best QB’s in the league right now while throwing for 370+ yards in 4 of his 6 games this season. Although I’m sure he will be doing just fine connecting with many of his receivers we might get to see Luck do some work with his legs in this match up. So far this season, the Bengals have been horrific at rushing the passer, which is a good reason for Luck to utilize his running game. We might see Pep Hamilton pulling out some QB rushing plays to force the Bengals to go man-to-man against some of the Colts receivers which we all know would turn out bad for them with T.Y., Reggie, and Hakeem all being huge threats.

The Bengals’ linebackers have been struggling this season which should result in a tremendous opportunity for Bradshaw and Richardson to rack up the yards running the ball up the middle. We might even see these two as serious threats in the passing game as well.

Even with A.J. Green out the Colts defense can’t slack on Cincinnati’s wide receivers. Andy Dalton is a great QB for the Bengals and deserves respect; he has the arm to make even mediocre receivers look good. Last week, without Green, Mohamed Sanu definitely stepped up in their tie against the Panthers by racking up 120 yards. Pagano needs to focus on him Sunday.

I think the Colts are going to be fueled by revenge. Last December Cinncy crushed the Colts 42-27. That wasn’t a pleasant taste at the end of the season last year for our squad and I think Pagano is going to remind them of that before the game. Colts have had 10 days for rest and preparation while the Bengals last game was a full overtime game. With this game being at L.O.S, I’ve got Indy winning this one 30-21.

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