How fitting is it that the Colts are playing in Washington DC this weekend since their defense resembles the politics in our nation’s capital. . .talking a good game but performing inconsistently. Dwight Freeney said that a lot of the team’s problems that happened against the Chiefs were “self inflicted” but if you watched the same game I did, the only self inflicted problems were done by the Chiefs themselves.
Luckily, we have offense. That’s right, we sure rolled up the score last week against the Chiefs and just tuckered Adam Vinatieri right out. We’ll come back to the offense later though.
Now..about that defense. Can the Colts stop the Redskins ? Who is their offensive threat? Who is the focal point of the Redskin offense?
If the Redskins are going to run on the Colts, as most teams try to do, they will need to be better at it than their statistical average. RB Clinton Portis is still out so most of the carries will be handled by RB Ryan Torain who is not exactly scaring any defenses after last week’s performance, 40 yds on 16 carries. If statistics are worth anything, Washington only runs slightly better than Indy. Given that, I’m guessing Mathis, Freeney, Muir and Moala will keep the run in check with the linebacker corp stopping the leaks.
How bout the pass. . .who is McNabb going to throw to? Basically, it’s a two man show featuring Santana Moss and Chris Cooley. Now neither guy is finding the end zone on a frequent basis but the two are averaging 14.1 and 13.2 yds per catch, respectively. If Kelvin Hayden and Jerraud Powers can step up and hold the Skins’ receivers down a bit, then McNabb has really limited options.
Now for the Colts’ offense. Joseph Addai and Donald Brown are still hurting so I’m not expecting much on the ground Sunday night unless Mike Hart breaks out. The onus is going to be on Peyton and given the ranking of the Redskins’ pass defense, that’s fine with me. The Skins rank last in opponents total completions and opponents passing 1st downs, two categories Peyton should feast on like a fat guy at the dessert table. As much as Washington would like to shut down the Indy receivers, it ain’t gonna happen. . .just too many weapons.
Any other keys? Yup. The Colts have got to take care of the ball. The Redskins have had a few turnovers go their way and if the Colts don’t cough it up, the burden of scoring is on the anemic Redskin offense. Manning doesn’t need to force any passes, just take what the Skins give him and take advantage of opportunity when it presents itself.
This should be a game where we see Manning racking up the yardage and TD passes we are accustomed to. If you are looking to see great rushing performances, this might not be the game to watch. I suspect it’ll be an aerial show. Expect the Colts to pull this one off, 27-13.
About the Author
Written by Patrick Blakeslee
I am currently a full-time student at State University of New York at Cobleskill. As a life long fan of sports, I hope to bring some research, insight and knowledge to the readers.