(note: I’ll only be updating at the end of each quarter. I’m way too uptight to do each drive tonight.)
- The first quarter defined little for the Colts. The offense moved the ball reasonably, but both drives stalled out with a field goal a punt from midfield. The Ravens have had tight coverage, and Colts receivers are struggling to hang onto the ball. The defense had major chances early, but a bogus offsides call on Mathis extended the Ravens drive. Hayden struggled early as the Ravens passed more than I would have expected. It almost bit them in the butt, as Bethea dropped an easy pick on the goal line that could have gone the other way for six. The second quarter begins with the Ravens pinned deep. Honestly, it’s been a solid start, and you get the feeling the Colts need just one big play to really get going.
- THAT’S WHAT I’M TALKING ABOUT! Manning and the defense absolutely dominate the second quarter. It all started with the defense. Flacco starts 4/4, but finishes 1/6 and the Ravens fail to get a first down. Manning takes over with 8:00 drive that took 14 plays (including a HUGE fourth down conversion to Addai), and then followed it up with a 1:23 drive also for a touchdown, which Wayne scored with just two seconds to go in the half. Manning caught fire and has a first half passer rating of 111.3. The Colts need 6 or 7 more points, and they can rely on the D to hold the lead. Absolutely a best case scenario for the Colts. Brilliant.
- Sometimes it just feels like your day. The D holds the Ravens on a key fourth down, and then Manning throws not one but two picks to Ed Reed. The first goes by the boards as Frenchy Garcon makes an incredible play to run him down and poke out the ball for a fumble. Then a second pick is called back on a good pass interference call. As we speak the Colts have a first and goal. If Manning punches this in, it will be a rare two INT drive that ends in an offensive TD. The Ravens also used two timeouts in the quarter, which means that three runs and a field goal here could go a long way to putting this game to bed.
- Put in the bag, folks. The Colts play the fourth uber-conservative, choosing to just run safe plays and punt. The Colts D continues playing large, forcing a fumble and a pick in the fourth quarter to kill Ravens drives. Tonight was all Colts, and next week we’ll play at home for a chance to go to the Super Bowl. Yes, I’ve very happy. This was a dominant, yet conservative game for the Horse, and those are hard to come by.