If you’re a fan of high flying offense and barn burning offensive numbers, you may have been pretty bored watching this game. Things started off pretty well for the Colts, as defensive tackle Denico Autry forced a Carlos Hyde fumble just three plays into the first quarter. The fumble was recovered by linebacker Anthony Walker. Autry’s name would come up quite a few times during the course of the game, as he managed a career day with 3 sacks and 2 forced fumbles. The turnover set up the Colts offense in great field position at the Jacksonville 42 yard line. Unfortunately, it was a short lived celebration. Three plays into the Colts’ first offensive series, Andrew Luck was forced out of the pocket and threw an errant pass in the direction of Eric Ebron, which resulted in an interception by Jaguars cornerback D.J. Hayden.
Those first two drives pretty much set the tone for the entire game. Turnovers, penalties, and punts plagued the offenses of both teams all day long. The first points almost came at the beginning of the second quarter. Kicker Adam Vinatieri had connected on a short 29 yard field goal, but on the play, the Jaguars were called for an unnecessary roughness penalty for roughing the holder. That put the Colts at the Jacksonville 5 yard line.
From the 5, Indy tried to muster enough offense to pierce the goal line, but were met by a blistering Jaguars defense in each of their four attempts, as the Jags ultimately forced a turnover on downs. That was as close as Indianapolis would come to points all day, as Jacksonville contained the ground game and forced Andrew Luck to throw over 50 passing attempts again this year. *Luck is winless in his career when he throws more than 50 passes in a game.
The only scoring that happened all game were two Josh Lambo field goals in the second and fourth quarters respectively. If not for two 4th down attempts inside the Jaguars 35 yard line, Indianapolis may have been able to pull this one out at the end. The decisions to trust in the offense twice, unfortunately resulted in failed attempts to get a touchdown and first down in each situation. Had the Colts been successful on field goal attempts in those situations, they were in position late in the fourth quarter to kick what would have been a game winner. You know what they say though, “hindsight is 20-20”. I applaud Frank Reich being aggressive near the end zone. He trusts his offense, and the goal line stop just as easily could have been a touchdown. As it ended up, the Colts lost this one 6-0, but are still in the thick of the AFC Wildcard race. Baltimore holds the 6 seed at 7-5, but Miami, Indianapolis, Denver, and Tennessee all sit at 6-6. With four games remaining in the 2018 regular season, here’s the remaining schedule for the Colts:
@Houston Texans Week 14
Vs Dallas Cowboys Week 15
Vs New York Giants Week 16
@ Tennessee Titans Week 17