Josh Boeke brings us his weekly piece, this week, something a little more light-hearted. Hopefully you can all breathe easier now after enduring the Colts' meltdown and MNF craziness. -KJR
This is a play by play account of my descent into madness watching the second half of the Jacksonville-Indianapolis game. Enjoy.
It’s halftime of the Colts-Jags game and things are going quite well. The Colts have just scored a touchdown to end the half with a commanding 14-3 lead and are about to receive the kickoff to begin the third quarter.
It’s a beautiful fall day in Fishers, Indiana. A cool breeze drifts through the open windows, pleasantly chilling the room, the sun shining in radiant beams through the slatted blinds.
As the third quarter kicks off I take a sip of my favorite adult beverage, the alcohol doing its blessed work as warm contentment washes over me. What a wonderful day, I think to myself as Cassius Vaughn fields the kick to begin the third quarter, what a glorious, amazing day.
A few plays later and Seth Olsen is back to his drive killing antics, getting a holding penalty on a nice 10 yard gain by Donald Brown. Ah, well, such is life right? That crazy Seth, always getting us into trouble. No harm done, punt the ball and stop them on D, the Jags haven’t been able to move it much, nothing to worry about.
I take another sip of my drink. A cloud crosses the sun, I shiver. On my television Maurice Jones-Drew is running untouched down the field; 59 yards later it’s 14-10.
I feel an itch on the back of my neck, a bead of sweat runs coolly down my forehead. It’s okay, nothing to be concerned about, just a blown coverage, we’ll make the adjustment. Take another sip.
The Colts’ next drive starts from the 20. The announcer is babbling on about something; I barely notice. Luck throws a completion to Reggie Wayne for a first down. Okay, okay, here we go, let’s get a little rhythm going. Luck looks for Collie over the middle, great grab, but man he just got hit hard by three guys at once. Collie is down on the field.
Why does my arm itch all of a sudden? I slap away a fly that’s buzzing near my face. The stadium is silent as Collie is being tended to on the field. My stomach takes a turn. Why does this keep happening to him? He seems like such a good guy too. Collie is holding his knee… at least it isn’t his head again. I get up to grab another drink, I’d rather not sit through the inevitable 7 replays of the injury that are about to happen.
Collie is helped to the sideline as I resume my position on the couch. Maybe it isn’t serious, at least they aren’t bringing out the cart. I grab another swallow of beer… it tastes a bit skunked. It’s probably just my imagination.
Luck throws incomplete to Fleener on 3rd down. Jeez, what’s with that guy anyway? It seems like he drops a couple a game. It’s to be expected I suppose, he is a rookie after all, he’ll figure it out, probably just thinking too much.
A nice defensive 3 and out and a skunked beer later I feel my jaw loosen up a bit. When did I start clenching my teeth? That’s bizarre. Whatever, probably just the Collie hit, had me a bit rattled.
Vick Ballard takes a couple solid runs up the middle of the defense, Luck throws a first down to Dwayne Allen near mid-field. Finally. After two terrible 3rd quarter performances it’s time for the Colts to show they can put a team away. Keep it going here guys, let’s get a TD.
I’m staring down the neck of my beer bottle as Luck sails a pass over the head of his intended receiver and into the waiting arms of Jacksonville MLB Paul Posluzny. Seriously Andrew? What are you looking at? That wasn’t even close. Okay, Josh, calm down man, it’s okay, we still have the lead and it’s not like they are starting in the red zone. The defense is playing well.
A couple first downs by the Jags moves them into field goal range. Let’s just hold them to a field goal, maintain the lead.
Gabbert is off target on 3rd, Scobee’s kick is good from 47. Colts 14 - Jags 13.
That single bead of sweat has now been joined by a half dozen more. No need to panic though, we still have the lead and they still have Blaine Gabbert. We score on this drive and we can still get out of here with an easy win and some momentum going into the bye, no harm done. Yikes though, another anemic third quarter… what’s with our offense in these second halves? Ah well, maybe I’ll write something on it later, a problem for another day.
Nice little return by Vaughn there to start the drive off right, this is more like it. 15 yard completion and I’m perking up a bit. What was I so worried about? 3 failed plays and a punt later and I can’t remember what I was so excited about.
The light in the room is flickering and I can feel that itch in my neck becoming an involuntary twitch. Could that glare on the screen be in a worse spot? How long has that dog been barking? What an annoying sound. Just block it out, block it out.
MJD for 6, MJD for 4, Gabbert for 22. Is someone mowing their lawn right now?! What kind of a moron mows their lawn during a Colts’ game?! MJD for 8, MJD for 5, MJD for 6. Should I go say something to this guy? I mean he’s mowing his f’ing lawn right outside my window. It’s ridiculous. Simmer down Boeke, you’re losing control, just ignore it.
Another first down, defensive pass interference. GET A STOP ALREADY!! The sound of mowing moves off but is replaced by the dog barking again. ARE YOU KIDDING ME! I curse the dog under my breath, stupid g%# damn dog.
Are we seriously going to lose this game? We were dominating these scrubs. Jacksonville isn’t even good! MJD for 1, incomplete, incomplete, FG. Colts 14-Jags 16. Okay, not bad, not bad. Held them to a FG. We can still win this. Plenty of time, Luck is clutch. It may look bad tomorrow, but a win is a win.
My throat is starting to tighten up, I grab another beer. The Colts are moving the ball. Thank God for that. Luck is hitting his spots, solid blocking, okay, looks like they are finally getting it going. That was a little crazy how irritated I just got, haha, I almost went and cussed out some guy mowing his lawn. Why wouldn’t he be mowing his lawn? Not everybody in Indiana is a Colts’ fan right? Maybe he’s going to watch it later on DVR, that’s a smart move actually.
Nice scramble by Luck, hit out of bounds; the penalty puts the ball at the 22. Let’s punch this thing in, stop messing around! Why are they running so much? Don’t they know we can’t run block? Okay, so we didn’t get the first down. No problem. Make this chip shot FG and we are back in the lead. I need another beer.
Wow! I’m not THAT drunk… did Vinatieri seriously just miss that?! The sound of mowing picks up as my neighbor comes back around. Who mows their lawn in a circle?! What the hell is this guy doing out there? Mow the front, then the back. Is he stupid?
Okay, okay, keep it together buddy, there’s still a lot of time left. Three and out guys, come on. YES! Nice stop D, nice stop. Okay, they have to punt, let’s get a nice return here.
This is your time Luck, let’s show Jacksonville who they are messing with. Holding on Allen. Why do we do this to ourselves? Just play clean guys. I know the refs are abysmal, but that was clearly a hold. Luck to Hilton for 32 yards! Hell yes! What a throw, what a catch, fantastic! This is why Andrew Luck was the #1 pick, the kid is unreal, ice in his veins.
Incomplete, incomplete, holding, incomplete; 4th and 20. What. The. F$)%! Oh my god, I’m going to snap. If that son of a b*#$ comes by my window one more time I will lose my s%(*. Deep breath Boeke, deep breath. Game isn’t over.
Jags run it three times (thank you Mike Mularkey) and get stuffed. Defense comes through again, this is a good sign. Luck in the 2 minute drill has been amazing, no need to worry, no need to worry.
Pass rush is coming, nothing open, throw it to Brown, throw it to Brown, he threw it to Brown! This could be big! GO GO GO GO GO! YES YES YES YES! 39 yards, field goal range, oh my lord, thank you Jesus. I really thought we’d blown this game. All we need is one first down, run the clock out, kick the FG, game over.
Donald Brown run, stuffed. No worries. That play didn’t work, let’s open it up here, there’s still 1:30 left, we just need one more first down. Donald Brown again, nothing. We aren’t just going to run it three times into the back of the line are we? Didn’t we learn anything from last week? Of course we did, Arians will call a pass here. Another run on third down, not enough.
Well, son of a b*#&. Whatever. Conservative calls, but it is Blaine Gabbert after all and we made them use their timeouts. Shouldn’t be an issue. 48 yards in 37 seconds to get in FG range, not bad Lucky, not bad. Vinatieri makes it interesting, but the FG is good. Whew, dodged some serious bullets today. All is right with the world once again. 60 seconds to victory.
What’s the late game today anyway? Broncos vs. Texans, oh nice, that will be a good game. Atta boy McAfee, don’t give them a chance to return it. I hope Vontae Davis is okay, I really think he’ll be a legit CB for this team. All right Colts, let’s end this thing in style.
I get up to grab a fresh one, got to stay ready for the afternoon games. As I’m walking to the fridge I hear a commotion coming from behind me, the announcers going ape. I turn around just in time to see Shorts hauling in a fingertip catch as a Colts’ CB runs haplessly in his wake, my neck goes into a full spasm as Shorts breaks into the open field. Bethea looks like he might have a chance but misses the angle and can’t recover.
As Shorts runs towards the end zone the room goes silent. Blood rushes to my head as I fall to my knees in disbelief, my ears pounding with each escalating beat of my heart. Audio fades back in and I hear the cacophonous racket of a lawn mower approaching and a dog barking incessantly. Sweat pours down my face in a torrent. The blinds have shifted and the sun streams directly into my eyes, blinding me with its oppressive incandescence.
From my vantage point on my knees I can make out the shape of a man diving into the end zone through the now all-encompassing glare on the TV screen. The beer in my hand plummets to the earth, glass hitting wood with a loud crack, its contents spilling out in a foamy puddle on the ground.
The feral fury inside me boils over and I let out a strident howl of pure emotion. The sound of mowing and barking stops. As I stroke out from the rage, my body convulsing, my last thought, “how the f*$# is that man still mowing his lawn?”
Okay, so maybe it didn’t go down EXACTLY like that, but it was pretty close. Just another day in the life of a Colts’ fan. Wouldn’t have it any other way.
Very funny...if only I could say that my day didn't go exactly like that too...except I started my first big rage at the delay of game penalty before the missed field goal. What in the hell were they waiting on? You're down by 2 to a terrible offense, you kick, always, no questions.
@AChoohoohoo Very true. Significant oversight by me. I'm glad you enjoyed the piece and that I'm not the only one who nearly died from a rage stroke.