Buckle up, Colts fans: We’re in for a wild ride this season without Peyton Manning under center. Nonetheless, the Colts roster contains a lot of really talented and promising players. In each weekly installment of Horseshoe Hero, I’ll highlight the player who I think made the biggest impact in that week’s game. Hopefully, I’ll be able to shed some light on relatively unknown and less popular players who step up and make big plays on game day, as well as remind you why our veterans are so great. As the newest writer for Naptown’s Finest, I hope to keep you feeling optimistic this season as we cope with life minus Peyton. Our Colts are fighting hard and playing admirably in his absence, and they need our support!
Without further ado, the first recipient of Horseshoe Hero honors is…Pierre Garçon!
I’ll admit, I immediately crossed Garçon’s name off the list of potential Heroes when he dropped Curtis Painter’s first pass attempt of the game. Painter’s throw was on target, and Garçon had no excuse to drop the football. I was upset with Garçon for having missed an opportunity to boost Painter’s confidence early in the game and help him establish a rhythm.
However, Garçon redeemed himself and then some. He only caught two passes Monday night, but they were without question the catches of the game. The first reception came with a little less than nine minutes remaining in the second quarter. Garçon secured the ball and ran it all the way down the field for an 87-yard touchdown: Painter’s first career NFL touchdown. What’s even more remarkable is that, in the process, Painter broke Peyton Manning’s record for longest career touchdown pass (though I think this is a deceiving statistic). Garçon also ran in his second catch for a touchdown, this time a 59-yard score in the third quarter.
Garçon’s butter fingers have been an issue of late. In fact, he’s become notorious for dropping what should be easy catches. But when the reception seems unlikely and acrobats are needed to secure the ball, Garçon comes through. What he does catch seems to make up for what he doesn’t.
I’ll never forget Garçon’s touchdown grab in the 2009 AFC Championship game. He essentially won that game for the Colts and secured them a spot in the Super Bowl. If Garçon can replace the butter on his fingers with glue, I’d love to see him make those kinds of plays again.
Come back next week to find out who earns the title of Horseshoe Hero against the Kansas City Chiefs.