Jacksonville, FL - The Colts took care of business on the road against the Jacksonville Jaguars yesterday afternoon. Andrew Luck and the entire Colts team was clicking on all cylinders, and dominated the Jaguars by a final score of 37-3. Let’s take a look at five observations that we can make from the game.
1. The Offensive Line Must Improve
The O-Line has been lackluster all season to this point, and it showed once again against the Jaguars. They allowed Andrew Luck to get sacked twice, and the run blocking was off as well, as Trent Richardson carried the ball 20 times for just 60 yards. All the blame can’t go on the line, but there were multiple plays where Richardson would take a hit almost immediately after taking the hand-off from Andrew Luck. That just cannot happen if the Colts want to establish the ground game at a high level.
2. Robert Mathis is a BEAST
One of the main concerns heading into the 2013 season for the Colts was the defensive leadership and pass-rushing ability. Robert Mathis has silenced those concerns to this point, and contributed another three sacks in this game alone. He made it look easy against the Jaguars’ offensive line, and hurried Gabbert all afternoon. As long as the Colts have Robert Mathis on their side, they will always have a player capable of getting to the quarterback at any time.
3. Coby Fleener Can Be a Legitimate Threat
Fleener has been my pick for X-Factor of the Colts’ 2013 season ever since Dwayne Allen went down with his season-ending injury. Reggie Wayne, T.Y. Hilton, and Darrius Heyward-Bey are great players, but they can only do so much by themselves. Coby Fleener is an athletic tight end who is more than capable of putting up big games each and every week. He took a big step towards proving himself yesterday afternoon by recording five catches for 77 yards and a touchdown.
4. The Colts Have a Balanced Offensive Attack
The days of the Colts relying on the passing game completely are over. Andrew Luck and Matt Hasselbeck combined to throw for 283 total yards, while the Colts’ rushing attack totaled 154 yards. Indianapolis will not put everything completely on the shoulders of Luck, and have committed to establishing the ground game early and often in games. First year Offensive Coordinator Pep Hamilton has made it clear that he wants a powerful rushing attack each and every week.
Overall, yesterday’s game was a very encouraging sign for the Colts and their fans. Many analysts had mentioned that this game could potentially be a trap game for Indianapolis coming off of a big win in San Francisco. The Jaguars were able to steal a game from the Colts last season, but Indianapolis made it clear with a big statement that they are the better team this season by far.