Colts interim head coach/offensive coordinator Bruce Arians filled in for Chuck Pagano on the ‘Pagano Show’ on Monday evening. Below are some of the highlights Arians had to say to ‘Voice of the Colts’ Bob Lamey:
The Packers jumped out to a 21-3 halftime lead. The Colts came storming back with 22 unanswered points. Green Bay responded with a touchdown with 4:30 remaining to take a 27-22 lead before the Colts had their final heroics with Reggie Wayne’s four-yard, game-winning, touchdown. Here are Arians thoughts on how back-and-forth the Packers game was:
“We took it from the top to the bottom and up and down the elevator twice I think emotionally. Playing as poorly offensively in the first half as we could and then probably as could as we could play in the second half as a team. It was a great team win.”
Down 21-3 at halftime, the message was pretty simple at halftime for the Colts:
“We had no reason to panic. We had a great plan. We had great practices. Why were we having so many mental errors and breakdowns? A couple of guys stood up and said, ‘It’s time to stand up and be accountable.’”
The comeback started on the first possession of the second half as cornerback Jerraud Powers intercepted a third-and-two pass intended for James Jones, giving the Colts offense a short field from the Packers 28-yard line. Here is Arians importance of Powers first interception of 2012:
“That was the play of the day. Then we were fortunate enough to take it in for a touchdown. I think that got the guys believing they could do it.”
The 89 offensive snaps for the Colts is a club record for a single game. How important was keeping the ball from the Packers?
“To have the ball for 35 minutes was crucial in that game. We needed to make first downs but not just hold onto it, we needed to score points. When you’re playing against Aaron Rodgers holding onto it isn’t going to do any good. He’s going to get his points, you’ve got to get yours. We always talk about production time. We want a point per minute. We were down their (in the red zone) with a first-and-goal from the four-yard line and kicked a field goal or else we would have hit it on the nose.”
Donald Brown had a season high with 89 yards on 17 carries (4.9 average) against the Packers. Even with two new starters on the offensive line, the run game had one of their best afternoons of the season. Here are Arians thoughts on Brown and the line:
“The whole focus the whole week was to get into the no huddle, wear them out and let Donald find some creases and use his speed. We’ve been trying to pound him up inside because he really loves to run the powers and the counters but we had to stretch that defense. The offensive line, God bless them, we haven’t had the same guys up there all year and this crew jumped up there. They just played their tails off.”
With everything that transpired last week, how much did this win mean to you?
“Personally, it felt like the world was lifted off my shoulders. We had to win that game. The way it happened, it was storybook. You can’t put into words emotions. The elation on those players and Mr. Irsay’s face, everybody, Ryan (Grigson), the whole organization on what it meant to get that game ball down to the hospital.”
The Colts will head on the road for four of the next six games. How do the coaches keep the player’s emotions in check moving forward to the Jets?
“We have a 24-hour rule. Whether you win, lose or draw, you go onto the next one. This team is too young to have a rearview mirror. We can’t be looking back and patting ourselves on the back. We have to go. We have to get ready. The foundation has been laid as far as practices and schedules to get us prepared properly to go win a ball game.”
Looking back at the final two quarters, is the key now to turn the momentum created in the second half to the final 12 games?
“That last 30 minutes of football, we set a standard of what we are capable of. Anything less is unacceptable. That was the message (Monday). We know we can play with the best teams in the league, now we’ve got to do it on the road. At home, it’s easy. But on the road in a hostile environment we have to be able to sustain what we had the last 30 minutes of the game because that was Colts football, the way Chuck always wanted it to be.”
You talked about allowing yourself to expand your role on the coaching staff with the absence of Pagano but how important was your coaching staff this week and the part they played in delivering this win?
“You’ve got to give Ryan and Chuck a great deal of credit for putting that type of staff together. The family (aspect) was huge in the entire thing, trust, respect and loyalty, faith, family and football. It is a group of guys that are really compatible. We all get along well. We have our scars from other places. I know I’ve moved 14 times. Chuck’s had 12 moves. Everyone’s been fired and hired. We love the game and you can’t have one guy that’s going in a different direction. That one splinter, that will crack the floor.”
Tags: bruce arians, chuck pagano, jerraud powers, Reggie Wayne
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