INDIANAPOLIS – The Colts head into the bye week following their best performance of 2016.
With major contributions from all three phases, the Colts left Lambeau with a 31-26 victory, after they were a touchdown underdog going into Week Nine.
It’s time for the Colts (4-5) to head into their bye week, before returning on Nov. 20 to play two home games in five days.
Here are FIVE THINGS LEARNED.
WIN THE SEGMENTS – Chuck Pagano’s message going into Sunday was for his team to have a major emphasis on winning the first five minutes of each half, and the last five of each half. Every unit chipped in to accomplish just that with the special teams and defense doing their parts in quarters one and three.
WHAT A START – The highlight of those four separate segments was the 99-yard kick return for a touchdown by Jordan Todman. It was the team’s first kick return for a TD since 2012. It was the Colts’ first opening game kickoff return for a TD since 1995.
DEFENSE FINDS RARE BLUEPRINT – Without the quarterback of their secondary (safety Mike Adams) on Sunday, the defense was extremely effective in keeping Aaron Rodgers largely under control. The defense was tremendous in forcing field goals. A Darius Butler interception of Rodgers in the third quarter was the first pick the future Hall of Fame quarterback had thrown in 133 pass attempts.
LUCK’S RESOLVE – It was an uncharacteristically sloppy first quarter for Andrew Luck, throwing two picks for the first time in his 5 NFL seasons. Luck bounced back though. He led a 15-play touchdown drive to end the first half. Then in the second half, with the offense sputtering, there was Luck with two massive third-down conversions to seal the victory.
HERE COMES THE BYE – The Colts knew the odds of 3-6 teams making the playoffs. They are now 4-5 and sit two games behind the Texans in the loss column for the AFC South lead. When the Colts return from their bye week, they will host the Titans (11/20) and the Steelers (11/24). The Colts will play three of their next four at home.
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