Here at Colts Authority, we're looking at the game from all angles!
Want to complain about refs and T.Y. Hilton not getting on the field enough? Greg Cowan did that already.
Quotes from the team? Marcus Dugan, as always, comes through.
Also shameless plug for a piece on the defense at B/R because I wrote it and liked it and hope you do too.
Want to relive the game through GIFs and unnecessary and not-as-funny-as-my-sleep-deprived-brain-thinks commentary? Then just keep reading!
Note: PAGE LOAD SLOW BIG FILES DIAL UP DO NOT ATTEMPT
You've been warned- KJR
We're going to skip most of the first quarter, because it was awful.
But on 2nd-and-8 after the Seahawks got the ball back after the blocked punt/safety, Jerrell Freeman forces a two-yard loss and a long third down.
Remember this play.
I don't know if Freeman is supposed to spy the QB here, or if he just reads the read-option perfectly. I'd guess he's assigned to the QB on the play, considering how they've been using him.
Freeman was incredibly effective in this role, which is WHY I KEEP ADVOCATING FOR IT.
Don't worry, it'll come up again.
But first, that stop allowed this to happen:
The return of T.Y. Hilton!
Hilton was fantastic throughout the day, and was responsible for nearly 200 yards (including PIs drawn).
This catch was incredibly Reggie Wayne-like.
But let's not forget someone: Andrew Luck.
Hilton was great, but he produced because Andrew Luck is doing unreal things on the football field.
Look at that throw. Would you just look at it?
It's absolutely perfect. Good things can happen when Luck has a pocket to throw from.
But even when he doesn't, Luck finds a way to get it done. This next play brought to you by Andrew Luck's Weekly Houdini Moment.
Please, please, please don't overlook plays like that. They are absolutely magical.
Not only is Luck able to spin away from the first defender and step back to avoid the second defender, but he somehow sees T.Y. Hilton open and plants his feet quickly enough to make an accurate throw. I have no idea how he did it.
John Lynch said, "That was sweet."
I guess that's one word to describe it.
I was thinking more along the lines of impossible, breathtaking or unfathomable.
Then there's this play to Reggie Wayne. How many QBs make that throw?
Somebody threw out six on Twitter on Sunday. I won't argue with that.
Side note: Andrew Luck is currently playing like the second-best quarterback in the AFC, and arguably a Top Five quarterback overall. That's absolutely incredible.
Speaking of Reggie Wayne, he taught Richard Sherman a little lesson on Sunday about one-on-one coverage. Namely, that it won't work forever, because Wayne learned how to run routes from Marvin Harrison.
One more offensive play to note, because I will give credit where it's due: Trent Richardson had a great run in the fourth quarter to help suck 2:30 extra off the clock and get into field goal range.
Richardson isn't playing great, but this run is exactly what the Colts are looking for from him.
On to the defense!
We're looking at five plays here, five plays that allowed the Colts to keep Russell Wilson from performing his fourth-quarter magic and sealed the win for Indianapolis.
First, Jerrell Freeman on a play that will get overlooked.
On 2nd-and-8, Seattle runs a well-designed, high percentage play, but Jerrell Freeman's speed and sure tackling prevents Tate from getting to the first down marker, which allowed this to happen:
ALL JERRELL FREEMAN EVERYTHING
Freeman on the spy/read-option read again, and once again, Freeman gives Wilson nowhere to go. It's a great play by Freeman, whose speed and intelligence has made him perfect for that role. The Colts might not need it much going forward, as they don't play another mobile quarterback, but it's nice to know that Freeman can be very effective as a spy.
When the Seahawks finally got the ball back, it was the secondary's turn to make some plays.
Greg Toler didn't have a good game, but this play forced a long fourth down for Seattle, rather than 3rd-and-5 or so.
Tate *should* make the catch here, but hey, it's a nice hit to force the incompletion.
But it was the play just before that truly earns some praise.
Darius Butler here, with the play that defines the Colts' secondary's slogan "#NoFlyZone."
Butler gets completely horizontal, maybe with a slight hold around the waist, and plays the ball perfectly. It was such a pretty play to watch, and it made the final play that much sweeter.
No GIF of the interception, because it was fairly routine, but look at the hit Freeman lays on Wilson to force the poor throw. Great game from him, and A+ to Butler, who gets the pick.
COLTS WIN COLTS WIN COLTS WIN
In other news, ESPN Insider has a nice Colts article that not all of us can access (go ahead, call me cheap. I am.) Any chance someone here who is an Insider can "summarize" it for us????
Great work, Kyle. Thank you. May I re-post some of them on the Romanian football forum? Never mind, I already did :)
Notice on the TR run that the Colts were in a passing formation. That allowed the OL to take care of the DL and TR just had a LB to beat for the first down. Hopefully we start to see more of TR in passing formations.
@NateDunlevy I'm still surprised more people aren't talking about it. It was an absolutely stellar game.
I was right on line w/ Luck, TY, and the ball on that 2nd TD pass & I swear to God I thought it was a 20-yard overthrow when it left his hands. Then TY hit some sort of hellbent nitro gear & BLEW past Browner -- who was already mid-sprint, mind you -- and caught up with the ball and it was the prettiest sports play I've ever seen in person, the end, that is not hyperbole.
(Kick-ass article too, Kyle. That goes without saying.)
"Speaking of Reggie Wayne, he taught Richard Sherman a little lesson on Sunday about one-on-one coverage. Namely, that it won't work forever, because Wayne learned how to run routes from Marvin Harrison."
Easily my favorite line in this whole piece :)
"The Colts don't play another mobile QB..."
Apparently you have been spending all your time watching the Colts and no other teams. The Broncos have this kid #18... they have so much confidence in him that they run completely "naked" plays. Sunday, against the Cowboys, he ran a bootleg, that he was so unbelievably quick and fast in executing, that as he "sprinted" into the endzone there was not a Cowboy defender in sight.
Great stuff Kyle. Jerrell Freeman had an awesome, awesome game. Unbelievable closing speed on that 4th down stop of Russell Wilson. Honestly, I don't think the Seahawks did anything on designed Zone-Read runs that WIlson kept.
As for Luck, that throw to Hilton on the 2nd TD was Manning-esque. The one complaint I have with him is for someone who can throw balls like that, he still is too inaccurate overall. But that will grow over time, I hope.
Finally, because it needs to be said for the eleventy quintillionth time, TY Hilton needs to be the #2.
Nice! Toler has been average but celebrates like he's Prime even when he's beat and the receiver drops the ball. The good news is that Butler appears to be playing better. He was definitely being picked out and picked on early in the season.
GIFs (pronounced GH-IFS, mind you) don't lie! Next it's time to rock San Diego out of a win. Much more pressure on our secondary but at least not a mobile quarterback. Sure, he's a complete jackass, but Rivers doesn't run around too much.
@codrutc Well, I guess you have permission then.
@Roy Hobbson If Luck/Hilton can have that kind of chemistry consistently... O.O.
And thank you sir. Too kind.
@jdb Spinning one of the best corners in the game around in a circle is a pretty good trick.
@jdb I did like that one.
@DougEngland Did you see the quote about how he didn't tell anyone -- not the sidelines or in the huddle -- that he was going to do it? So great.
@dmstorm22 #Free T.Y.
@buymymonkey GIFTs - T!!!! HIGH FIVE!
@pierrezombie I think it was actually that blinding 4.2 speed that set it all up.
(Actually, I knew as soon as it happened what he had done. He did it several years ago to run out the clock against the Raiders and would have walked in for like a 35 yard TD but slid to the ground right before the endzone. Some uninitiated in the ways of the Manning Force, were initially giving credit to the Broncos Offensive Coordinator for making a great call. I, of course, knew all along that it was a Peyton Mind Trick.)
@Kyle Rodriguez @buymymonkey I can't figure this out. You probably know the abbreviated G-word if Graphic, hard G. But the guy who invented the damn thing pronounces it with a J sound, soft G. Logic says it's Hard-G IFF, but that's like naming your kid Bile and having everyone in the world call him BILL because it makes more sense to them.