Ajit Kerpekar has done game charting for other football sites. He’s going to check in regularly with his observations about the Colts.
- Two weeks ago, on defense, the Colts actually did a good job against Vick for the majority of plays. They bottled up his running and throws for the most part, but the problem was they got burned on several long passes to Jackson that really attacked the deep coverage. Given how the Eagles completely dismantled the Redskins, it’s safe to say the Colts did a really good job all in all. I expected a strong defensive effort coming into this game.
- On offense, the Colts’ strategy against the Eagles that was stunningly un-Colts like. Instead of running their normal type of plays, they threw a ridiculously high number of bubble screens and a high number of first read short passes. At first, this might seem to be in response to the Eagles’ penchant for blitzing, but these passes were made even when the eagles were playing 5 db off coverage. The fact that the Colts chose to attack this way rather than their conventional strategy told me they either had no trust in their pass protection or no trust in their wide receivers to move down the field. I wasn’t sure which at the time, but against the Bengals, they did not play the same way.
- In the first half, the Colts game planned as if they would have time to throw against that Bengals front four pass rush; and they seemed to get good protection through much of the first half. By my count, 7 of Manning’s first 24 attempts were medium or deep passes. Out of those, 4 were completed, 1 was overthrown, 2 were dropped, and in nearly all he had time to throw. Most of these went to Tamme; who clearly appeared to be the favorable matchup against the Bengals. The Bengals; who went a predominant four man rush and zone coverage behind found linebacker Jones matched up against Tamme for most of the day.