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Pretty much sums up (with exception of not taking the Pats loss as badly as you) how I feel as well. Thanks for writing this.
9 months, 2 weeks ago on Coping with Conflict
This exactly. It was an "easy" call from that perspective. Look at the interface of chap's hand and BJGE's foot a couple times and it is obvious you cannot say that he was not touched. Can you prove he was? No, and mainly because chap is wearing gloves that match the ball carrier's shoes. But no human being can look at that video and say indisputably that he wasn't touched.
Is the system in need of improvement? Of course. However, these officials watch as much as if not more film than players and are all experts in this type of thing. HE DIDN'T EVEN LOOK AT THE ACTION IN THE BACKFIELD! HOW DOES THAT HAPPEN?
10 months, 2 weeks ago on Monday Morning Moaner: Colts vs. Bengals, Crowd Sourcing
Not that it would have won them the game, but the fact that Triplett came out and said that he didn't even look at the action in the backfield on the 4th down play is utterly unbelievable, but sadly not a surprise of an answer from this man. I read Peter King's series on the life of an NFL official and I grew a new respect for these men at all levels of the game. But all are clearly not created equal and Triplett clearly has fallen into a Schaub/Texans-like rapidly accelerating downward spiral. And he was one of the worst to begin with. As soon as I saw we had him, I knew it'd be bad. That was only one of many questionable calls, many (not all) of which went against Blue.
I do not think it is the Colts strategy. They just prep for tendencies before the game and adjust to the game at halftime. That we did so well in the big games shows that prepping for our opponent's strengths works quite well when they actually come out and play to their strength.
It also exposes a vulnerability in that they don't prepare well for the "surprise scenarios" from the perspective of the opponents game plan.
I do not think it is a bait and switch. I don't think they want to give up the lead big and early.
11 months, 1 week ago on Colts Beat the Titans 30-27 with Another Second Half Surge
I hear you exactly on the mindset of "what can be, what could've been" I'm totally on board. The only thing is that the reality is that the team dinky is not the team that played the first few weeks. They are capable of big things. Big achievements will just be over achieving, that's all.
Re: the Hawks. I agree. But they aren't an inferior team and we weren't in a big hole at the half and we had momentum going in, making adjustments on their part natural.
The theory really only holds water when looking at inferior teams who came out playing a completely different gameplan than their tendencies would suggest.
Yes, it drives us crazy. I'm beginning to get the feeling that two main things lead to this.
1. Preparation: in the last three games (the only ones I've been paying attention to in this particular regard) the Colts played 'inferior' teams that they were supposed to beat. All three games, the opponent came out playing a game counter to their identity. Then, once we have some 'film' on them from the first half, we make adjustments and beat them in the 2nd half. (Obviously didn't win all 3, but I'll explain) The Texans are a running team and came out throwing every pass deep to Johnson. We adjusted phenomenally at the half and turned the game around. The rams came out throwing it to Austin,something they weren't expected to do. How much had you heard about Zac Stacey leading up to the game. They were going to feed that monster all day. Yup, he basically did nothing. We actually adjusted well at the half, but were in too big of a hole. And the large deficit led to too many risks by both QBs, leading to three red zone TOs. Put those on the board, eliminate one of the two flukey plays and we live out the script for a comeback win. The joke was just too big though. The Titans came out in the no-huddle, with Fitz slinging it all over the field. Only once that opened running lanes did they feed Johnson. We adjusted to that gameplan at the half, shutting them down.
In a weird and twisted way, the success they have against us (coupled with the Colts 3-and-outs) works to our advantage come the half. It is unlikely that the team with a successful gameplan will make major halftime adjustments. What do you always hear coaches say headed into the locker room with a decent lead? "We will keep doing what we are doing. It all comes down to execution" false. It isn't all execution. While against human nature to 'fix' something that isn't broken, you must anticipate your opponents' upcoming adjustments. Make some yourself and continue success. If you stand pat and your opponent adjusts, they are likely to win the second half, and probably the game. The Colts have honestly been masterful at the adjustments, especially in adjusting to unforeseen game plans. In the games that we started fast (Broncos, 49ers, is there even another one?), the team played to their identity hecause they were good enough in that area to beat you. They weren't the inferior team, and didn't have to fool you with gameplan. They could beat you straight up with execution and talent. We are vulnerable to weaker opponents who start a game in a manner counter to their identity. Keep an eye on this and see if we improve in this area. It would give us an advantage in the playoffs, where there aren't inferior teams. Unless, however, we show enough of a trend in this (seems obvious to me) that other teams pick it up and good/great teams use it to their advantage. Right now, a Belicheck gameplan is terrifying because they'd do this, and then be smart enough to have an entirely new plan after the half.
2: the offense is still searching deep for its identity. It'll take a while and our 3 game cushion helps with being ale to work that out. Look for small improvements and adjustments each week. From gameplan to play calling to personnel and execution and adjustments. They showed some growth last night against a good defense. Small steps forward will put us in a good place come playoff time.
Maddening? Even more yes.
Fun? Of course.
I'd suggest lowering expectations (as a fan) for the remaining games. Losing the starting talent we have this year really does make this team more like last years and less like the team we started this year with. Keep this in mind, Bob Lamey (I think it was him) said this before the game: the titans have 3 players on IR this year (they obviously lost their most important player in Locker, but they have still lost only 3 for the year. The colts have lost 15 to IR. I do not know how that stacks up against the league, but that is a big number and included HALF of our offense. That's rough.
Keep your chin up and just enjoy the ride. This is an over achieving flawed team. Dream about a future when we have a healthy lineup and a rejuvenated Wayne back on the field.
Two things stand out to me with DB (not to be confused with DHB).
1. Vision: I honestly don't recall whether he had vision like this in previous years or not. He was just always a frustration. Now, his vision is elite. If there is running room, he finds it. And with his quick burst, he can dart through the crease before it closes. That seems to be the defining delta between TRich and Donald. Trent's vision (or decision making) isn't up to the speed of the NFL (yet, hopefully) and he starts to cut into a small crease a moment too late many times. Then, instead of slashing through a late attempt at an arm tackle, he is running into the body of the defender and just trying to push the pile (which he is quite good at, he rarely falls backwards. Not quite near Edgerrin-esque, but positive. With Edge, if you handed him the ball, it seemed as though he could get his entire body horizontal while still on his feet and get us four yards. Miss that guy (ok, I'll move on, I'm in danger of major digression.)
2. POWER: the thing that has surprised me most about Donald is his ability to carry tacklers and break tackles. He (if I remember correctly) would go down easily in the past on first contact. I could be wrong, but he just seems like a beast fighting for his life (and really, he is in a contract year) and he is fighting hard. I really hope we sign him again.
I'd actually prefer we be able to keep all the backs (Ballard, Brown, Rich, Bradshaw) but most think that isn't a possibility. Who knows, with the run game emphasis. Imagine two or more of them on the field together if all 4 are healthy. That'd be an interesting run offense.
I may have failed to clearly communicate this, but I agree with you. They were flukey plays. A lot of them very rapidly. Take away one, maybe two and we are in the running for another doable comeback. The last few drives carry much less pressure and Luck probably doesn't turn the ball over like that if we have a real chance of winning. We are not a bad team. A division winning team is a good team. But we are suffering badly from the injuries.
I didn't watch the Rams/Texans game, but I recall it having much the same flavor. I believe there was a ST TD and definitely was a pick 6. Rams had like 200 yards and dominated the texans on the scoreboard. Fisher knows the AFC south and he has shown that this year.
11 months, 1 week ago on Colts Fall Hard Against St Louis 38-8
Agreed on the 9 completed passes. I saw that stat later. Also, we held their so-called stud back to something like 67 yards on 27 carries. 9 completions and 67 yards rushing is a dominating performance. Unless you have a handful of critical breakdown leading to big plays. And that was the story of that game. I think this is a team of overachievers with an OC that has a lot to learn about adapting in the NFL. They'll get better in successive seasons,
But yesterday made me really feel like we will be one and done. Losing all the O starters is really taking its toll. And D Thomas may have been the biggest loss in retrospect (though an argument could be made for any of the others).
DHB just isn't good and the other receivers lack the 'it' that makes a receiver special. Nobody fears them.
And what is up with V Davis? After an excellent performance against the Broncos, he has taken the last two games off.
This is a good team, but there are just maybe one too many weak areas to overcome for them to be a true contender. We cannot pretend this is the same team that beat San Fran. Nor the same team that best Seattle and Denver. Attrition has hurt us, badly.
Hi all, I'm migrating here from Stampede Blue where there is just too much negativity (criticism is fine, but there is little analysis, just bashing) anymore.
Anyways, I'm a displaced fan banished to California since 2005. Love the Colts.
As bad as today was, the game was simply lost on 4 bad plays by the good guys.
1. Strip sack TD.
2. Austin PR TD - crazy play. Not heads up football at all by Colts and total credit to Rams.
3. Austin Pass TD 1 - big play (55+ yd)
4. Austin Pass TD 2 - big play (80 yd)
Those four plays were definitely bad breakdowns, but we were far from dominated. Eliminate two of the and don't throw all the picks, and we need up back in the game late.
But it sure did feel like dominance. Because it was big plays, it seemed like all they had to do was touch the ball and they were going to score. Cannot wait until Thursday!