Week 10: Indianapolis Colts At Jacksonville Jaguars
- QuarterbackAndrew Luck had a sensational game in throwing for a rookie record 433 yards in the Colts’ Week Nine victory over the Dolphins. Luck demonstrated his athleticism, arm strength, quick release and his ability to read defenses. He has lookedsolid throughout the season, but he was at his best by completing 30-of-48 passes with two touchdowns and no interceptions.It’s quite a different story for the Jaguars at the quarterback position. Gabbert may have size, strength and plenty of desire, but he’s not very good at his job. His passes lack accuracy and he’s really just guessing when he reads defenses. He may someday get to where he needs to be, but he’s not close at this point.
- OffenseThe Colts looked like an ordinary team on paper at the start of the season, butthey are building a solid supporting cast for luck. Wide receiver Reggie Wayne is elusive and dependable. T.Y. Hilton has the speed to get deep but needs to hold on to the ball a bit better. The running game is much better than expected with Vick Ballard and Delone Carter.The Jaguars are going to struggle as long as running back Maurice Jones-Drew is out with a foot injury. He could not play against Detroit in Week Nine and Rashard Jennings was just ordinary running the ball with 12 carries for 45 yards. Cecil Shorts is not a finished receiver but he runs hard and get downfield and make the catch.
- DefenseThe Colts are one of the biggest surprises in the league as the season moves into the second half and it’s not just because of Luck. They have become a very aggressive defense and they can get after the quarterback with Robert Mathis turning the corner and causing havoc. Free safety Antoine Bethea is coming off a 6-tackle effort against Miami.The Jaguars have some talent on defense but something went askew in their Week Nine loss to the Lions. They simply got pushed around way too much and gave up three rushing touchdowns in the first half. Linebackers Paul Posluszny and Russell Allen are much better than they showed against Detroit and they need to make more plays.
- Special TeamsAdam Vinatieri may be running out of steam. He missed 2-of-5 field goal attemptsagainst Miami and is an ordinary 13-of-17 this season. Punter Pat McAfee has been consistent for the Colts, averaging 48.0 yards per punt and getting enough height on his kicks to keep opponents from returning them.The Jaguars feel good about punter Bryan Angers, who has a strong leg and can get the ball away quickly. He is averaging 48.3 yards per punt. Placekicker Josh Scobee did not have a field goal attempt or an extra point in the loss to the Lions. However, he is having an excellent season, making 14-of-14 field goal attempts heading into Week 10.
The Colts are playing with house money since they were expected to be a last-place team by most of the experts and they now have an excellent chance at making the playoffs. Luck is showing a veteran’s savvy and getting better each week. While winning on the road is often impossible for young quarterbacks, the Jaguars look dazed and confused and may not put up much of a fight.