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Redzone Performance: Colts Overview

Last week, I introduced a series that I'll be working on for a couple weeks for Colts Authority: performance in the redzone

If you haven't read the introduction already, please do. It won't take you long, and what little information that was there may be useful.

In the piece, I gave a quick look at the league as a whole, with a chart that listed each team and where they ranked in touchdown percentage (how many times a team scored a touchdown per trip to the redzone) throughout the 2012 regular season. In order to save you a click and a few seconds, here is that chart once again: 

I gave a few notes in that intro piece about the league as a whole, but before we get into league-wide comparisons for individuals and different positions, I wanted to dig a little deeper into the Colts' team performance. 

  • The Colts got into the redzone and then knelt to end the game twice throughout the season: in the final game against Houston in Week 17 and in Jacksonville on Thursday Night Football in early November. It doesn't change the stats shown above at all (For TD and scoring percentages I only charted games that ended in either a score or a turnover), but it's interesting.
  • During the regular season, the Colts turned it over three times. The first time was during Week One, when Andrew Luck's pass intended for Reggie Wayne was intercepted by Chris Conte. Luck threw another interception (this one intended for Donnie Avery) in Week 6 against the Jets. The final turnover was in the Colts first matchup with the Texans, when Mewelde Moore fumbled the ball at the goalline (after Bruce Arians' inexplicable decision to bring him in for the goalline. The Colts would lose each game where they committed a turnover in the redzone. 
  • Colts' catch rates in the redzone (5+ attempts): Coby Fleener- 37.5%, Donnie Avery, 38.5%, Reggie Wayne: 41.2%, T.Y. Hilton: 62.5%, Vick Ballard: 71.4%, Dwayne Allen: 75%. 
  • Allen also had the best TD rate among those receivers, catching three touchdowns on just eight attempts in the redzone. T.Y. Hilton was next with two TDs in eight attempts. Meanwhile Wayne and Avery had four and three TDs, respectively, but it took them 17 and 13 throws. 
  • Donald Brown had the best yards per carry in the redzone, the only Colt to have a YPC higher than three with 4.44. Vick Ballard Averaged 2.96 YPC and scored two touchdowns in 25 attempts. Delone Carter had a YPC of just 1.4 yards, but was only used in one-yard-to-go situations, and had a success rate of 80%. As a team, the Colts' rushing DVOA in the redzone was 8.3%, 10th best in the NFL. 
  • Of course, one reason the Colts were so successful running the ball was the scrambling of Andrew Luck. Luck scrambled seven times for 31 yards, including four touchdowns and two first downs. Luck's only scramble to not gain a first down or touchdown was a two yard scramble up the middle on 3rd and 4 against Tennessee. Luck also scored a touchdown on a QB sneak against Jacksonville, bringing his total TD count to five.
  • The Colts were exceptionally bad against Baltimore in the playoffs, getting into the red zone twice and getting just three points. On the first trip, Mewelde Moore got two straight carries, setting up a 3rd-and-4. Luck threw a slant pass to Wayne on third down that he couldn't hang on to, leaving the Colts with a field goal. The Colts final trip ended in an interception by Luck as the Colts went for it on fourth down.

But, what we're really interested in in going through this series is Luck's passing in the red zone, which wasn't quite as impressive. That will be our topic in the next post in this series, as we look at quarterbacks around the league in both passing, rushing, and overall effectiveness. 

Kyle J. Rodriguez

About Kyle J. Rodriguez

A film and numbers guru, Kyle writes about the NFL and the Indianapolis Colts for Bleacher Report, Draft Mecca and The Football Educator, and is a co-founder and associate editor of Colts Authority. Kyle also is a high school sports reporter for the MLive Media Group in Michigan, covering high school sports across the state.

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