The Andrew Luck era began for the Indianapolis Colts today, and a very successful beginning it was to be. The St Louis Rams visited Lucas Oil Stadium in the first game of the 2012 NFL preseason.
It was Luck who would first put points up on the board with a short dump to running back Donald Brown on the Colts first offensive play of the game, Brown would take it to the house on a 63-yard touchdown reception, not bad at all for your first career pass. Luck later connected with Austin Collie for a 23-yard score to put the Colts 14-0 up, the play showed Luck’s intelligence, looking off the safety then making the throw. The Colts continued to push on with Luck; who was still in deep into the second quarter, with a 1-yard touchdown run by Delone Carter set up by a perfect throw over the middle from Luck to Quan Cosby for a 32-yard gain, two plays previous. This gave the Colts an 18 point lead at the half, leading the Rams 21-3.
In the second half the Colts managed to score all the points, with Darren Evans cashing in on a 1-yard run and Chandler Harnish completing a pretty pass to Jeremy Ross for a 33-yard score, the Colts completed the days scoring with a 31-yard Pat Mcafee field goal to run out easy winners at 38-3.
Today we learned that Andrew Luck is the real deal. We’ve heard about how good he is for an eternity, yet in Luck’s first preseason game he lived up to all the hype, completing 10 of 16 passes on his way to 188-yards and two TDs. Yes it’s the preseason, but nevertheless he showed a great poise and presence in the pocket which made him particularly impressive and also fills all Colts fans with hope and confidence for the future.
Today we learned that Jerry Hughes might not be a bust after all. It may be premature to assume after one preseason game that Hughes is going to explode into a breakout year for the Colts this season, however Hughes showed a new lease of life in Pagano’s defense, and certainly is showing signs of progress of which are very overdue. I’d love to see Hughes live up to his first round potential this season, and today he certainly showed us that that may just be on the horizon.
Today we learned that the Colts offensive line needs work. On many of Luck’s first few pass plays, he was immediately under pressure due to poor offensive line play and if not for his pocket presence, Luck likely would have taken a number of sacks. The lines play did appear to improve as the game went on but many of the starters had left the game. One can only assume that without improvement, it’s abundantly clear the Colts will struggle offensively, despite the talent at quarterback and on the rest of the offense. If I was Ryan Grigson, I’d be looking for a veteran guard to solidify the line.
Today we learned that the Colts have a number of bright prospects at the wide receiver position. I was very impressed with Lavon Brazill, who made a number of great grabs and is said to be having an excellent camp thus far. T.Y Hilton also looked impressive hauling in a very difficult diving sideline catch, somehow managing to snag the ball whilst dragging his feet to stay in bounds. Both look like bright sparks for the Colts, and both pose a serious threat to veteran Donnie Avery, especially Brazill who figures to be a more like-for-like replacement of Avery. That being said all three easily should make the roster along with Reggie Wayne and Austin Collie as the Colts receivers for the season, I’d be very surprised not to see Hilton, Brazill or Avery on the roster come opening day, yet with other young talent such as Quan Cosby on the roster Avery, if not one-hundred percent healthy, could be cut.
So the Colts wrap up week 1 of the preseason with an impressive victory. The defense look aggressive and Luck, well, I don’t think anyone could have asked for more out of him. It may only be the preseason, but to me the new Colts have kicked this era off to the best of starts.