Oct 28, 2012; Nashville, TN, USA; Indianapolis Colts running back Vick Ballard (33) dives for a touchdown against Tennessee Titans corner back Ryan Mouton (29) linebacker Colin McCarthy (52) and safety Michael Griffin (33) during overtime half at LP Field. The Colts beat the Titans 19-13. Mandatory credit: Don McPeak-US PRESSWIRE
The Tennessee Titans defense showed up on Sunday. Andrew Luck was constantly getting pounded. Michael Griffin was playing like his old self, picking off passes and laying the hammer over the middle.
But it wasn’t enough.
Andrew Luck is a god among men. I am not talking about his performance, or even his skill set. Andrew Luck is already getting the Tom Brady treatment. Roughing the passers were called on clean hits and the football gods were setting him up for success on nearly every play.
I call it Luck, the Colts think it was just Andrew.
Yes, the guy is good, but man he was stroking luck constantly. He went 26-38, not very impressive. Derrick Morgan and Kamerion Wimbley both had a field day against the Colts tackles, but the middle of the Titans defensive line didn’t show up. Since they took the day off, Andrew Luck was set up with 2nd and 3rd and short constantly.
The Colts were running wild up the middle of the Titans defensive front. Back to back rushing first downs is pretty rare in this league, on Sunday it happened twice against the Titans.
The flip-flopping performances of the Titans defense is not because of talent, it is due to coaching and bad team defense schemes. A team can not win when his defensive tackles are snoozing, while other games is has been the ends. It all has to come together.
Some bright spots included Akeem Ayers FINALLY rushing the passer and he was damn good at it. Having Colin McCarthy in the line up allows Jerry Gray to call what he wants. Derrick Morgan was a pressure machine throughout his best performance as an NFL defensive end. He may never be a 10 sack guy, but you can throw out the bust label because the guy is an all around beast.
While Andrew Luck didn’t torch the Titans, Vick Ballard got the play of the week and so far the season. His TD run, or better yet his TD barrel role, put a knife through the Titans playoff hopes. There is possibility, but now they rank third in a relatively weak AFC South division.
Next week is the Chicago Bears. They are a high-powered team that has been slowed by an arrant Jay Cutler and a poor offensive line. I expect the Titans front to have a more complete game against Chicago.
My Grade: B-