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Colts/Bills report card-F

COLTS7

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I am going to try not to over-react after 1 game, but that was pretty much a total domination of all 3 phases and a very sloppy and lack luster effort, which like the pre season is kinda hard to understand, with all of the off season programs and pre season to get ready for this game and look like they were not ready to play a football game.

 

Offense: Is Luck ready to be in the elite group? Not based on that performance, did not show good judgement or display very good accuracy, for most of the game, moreso in the first half. The running game looked good at times, although it was an afterthought once the game got out of hand, but really was an afterthought even early in the game, so much for a balanced attack, I think the game plan was to pass and pass and pass, get a lead, then run the ball, didn't quite work out that way. Gore looked good, for the most part, but spent alot of time on the sidelines, the 2 rookie backups played well. The rushing ( RB's) total for the game was 44 yds, with a 49-17 pass-run ratio. Hilton seemed to be the only receiver on the field the first half ( or the only one who was targeted), then spent alot of the second half on the sidelines. You would think with all of the weapons on the perimeter, the 2 tight ends-who are a matchup nightmare would be a key to the game, were seldom used, except for quick hitters on short routes. The O-line struggled, as was expected, this is one of the best defenses in the league and facing what was hyped as one of the best offenses in the league, it looked like a street fight,on paper, but our offense, did not have an answer. Have to give a failing grade to Hamilton, in his first shot with the loaded offense, his job is to create plays, that will give the players a chance to succeed, he also had no answers and using hindsight, did not a very effective game plan. Johnson did not impress, in game #1.

 

Defense: the 2 big questions entering the season, were the 2 lines, and alot of focus was on the D-line and the run defense-overall. After 1 game, it does look very promising, giving up 147 yds and almost as many missed tackles. The pass defense really wasn't much better, making Taytor who was starting his first NFL game, look like a seasoned vet. Butler is very good inside, covering the slot receiver, looked lost on the outside filling in for Toler and was torched. There was not much pressure on the QB and finished with 0 sacks. Most people didn't expect the defense to be dominant, but the hope is that they could be at least-decent, the 2 rookie linemen should get better as the year goes on and they had better learn quickly! Anderson did tie for the team lead (with Jackson) with 9 tackles, impressive for a D-linemen and Langford made several plays for a loss early on. Can't say the defensive game plan was all that impressive either.

 

Special teams: even the dominant unit from last year, did not have a very good game, the coverage units were ok, McAfee was not on his game and Adam missed his only field goal attempt, the returners were so/so and had a huge turnover.

 

Summary: We try not to over react to 1 game, there are games like that , every year, but it is hard to overlook a complete domination and lackluster effort in game #1. Most of the predictions had the Colts winning, I expected a hard fought, down to the wire type of game, a game we should win, but even if we didn't, I did think we would be competive. I already hear the words, we will watch the tape, make the necessary corrections, it's a marathon, not a sprint, I almost said the playoffs appear to be a long shot after that performance, but playing in the AFC South, it's pretty much still a given, but to improve on last years championship game and make it further, is going to take a lot of fixing and after the first look at the 2015 team, there is alot of problems. In any game, there are always positive, there were several individual players who stood out, but as a team, can't say there was much to be positive about that effort.

 

a few of the "keys" to the game:
* too many costly penalties on the O-line
* turnovers (4- and almost had a 5th) including Dorsett's costly fumble ( after bobbling the previous kickoff)
* Freemen drops an almost certain pick-six, that was in his hands
* dropped 2 pt attempt by Johnson ( that appeared huge at the time)

 

final thought: I hate to pour salt on a wound, but I feel very strongly that the #1 pick in the draft should have been used on one of several dominant defensive players who were on the board at the time and not in upgrading one of the strongest and deepest positions on the team and after game #1, that has only been magnified, as Dorsett was seldom used and only saw reps at WR, due to Hilton's injury and slammed the door on the comeback attempt with his turnover and watched the run defense get shredded-again.

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Other "keys" I saw today.

 

Inability to tackle, period.

 

YAC was probably less than 10 yards.

 

Gore and Johnson were on the physically unable to perform list.

 

No play action passes that I can remember.

 

Zero depth at most positions.

 

I would give the Colts an F- if I could....heck they don't deserve a grade. Pagano's last year is going to be a distraction and a lot of excuses....they did not build a "Monster". 

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COLTS7 you said it all.  And let me add that one game DOES define a season, not necessarily this one but the one against the Patriots in October.  If we go 2/3 or 3/2 that game will not only define the season but will tell you all you need to know about the chances of getting to the play-offs. Let's be icy cold about this team, after Luck we have maybe 3-4 quality players, the rest of the team is no more than average.  We have an average coach and a below average GM who can't identify talent with two hands.  Dorsett was a wasted opportunity to address the many real needs of the team.  I don't want to go over all his many  poor choices in talent procurement, but why is Bjorn Werner on this team?  We will need luck (pun intended) to build a team around Andrew that will be competitive enough to be a SERIOUS SB contender with Grigson & Pagano trying to build it.

 

Color me disgusted.

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I have to disagree on the talent level on this team, Luck, Hilton, Mathis,Jackson, Davis,Adams, McAfee, Snow and Adam have all been to the pro bowl within the past few years and the TE duo of Allen and Fleener is prob the best in the league.....the are other solid players.....Gore, Castonzo, Walden, Langford and some good looking younger players....Moncreif,Mewhort,Robinson,Varga, Anderson,Parry, I really like Pagano, Grigson has not been as good as needed, he is good, but for this team to get where it wants to go, he needs to be better than ....just good, Hamilton and Manusky seem to be decent. Part of the problem is the yearly overlooking of the 2 lines, which is critical to winning in crunch time and in the postseason, which can make the rest of the talent irrevelant. some of it is just plain bad luck....losing guys like Jones, Cherilus, Thomas to injuries didn't help and guys like Chapman, Hughes, Thortan,Holmes who all had high celings that didn't  pan out. This is a talented team , with good enough coaching and leadership to get it done and have the best young QB in the NFL, some what's missing? Not sure I have an answer for that...as it stands now, this team is going to have a sucessfull year , how far they go, is yet to be seen, how the future of the era unfolds during the Luck era remains to be seen. It is 1 game, we have seen games like that many times over the years that defy logic, it happens and every year, teams look dominant, at times and lackluster at times, if you are playing your best football in the December and make it to the playiffs, anything can and will happen. The bottom line is that should have never happened (on paper) but it did, that is going to make many people take notice............how they respond will be very telling.

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COLTS7, I hear you and maybe expectations for this team as currently constituted are unrealistic.  I think football fundamentals are just inconsistent and sometimes non-existent.  You could argue we have talent, but if I agree (which I don't), then why is it that they can't consistently execute, and I am not just talking this game but I go back to last year when tackling & blocking were  consistently poor. No question, we have some quality players at the skill positions, but what good is that if you lack the fundamental execution by the other positions.

 

As far as bad luck explaining some of Grigson's  FA signings and drafts, we already covered the Dorsett selection.  What about TRich, Ricky Jean Francois, LaRon Landry, Bjorn Werner all in less than four years.  You can't blow two number 1's (TRich & Werner) in four years. 

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It appears that the coaching isn't that good, that would explain why the team didn't look prepared to play, but I really donlt buy into that. Pagano is a football life, it's  who he is, so again, I really can't explain it, other than , it happens, every year, to every team.

I agree on those points, Grigson has made some bad moves, but on the flipside, he got Davis (where would this defense be without him) Adams and Jackson (pro bowls their first year here) Freeman (who is solid, I really thought he was on his way to stardom-hasn't happened) Walden,Redding who have all panned out. His first draft was record setting (Luck-Allen-Fleener-Ballard), so he has done many good things, the problem is he has made too many bad moves, that's why i felt that although he has done good, good isnlt good enough, he has to be very good, one of the best

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I no its only 1 game but the effort was terrible they looked lost. Have the feeling its going to be a long year there is no way this D is going to stop the good offensive teams.Grigson has been here 4 years and the Oline is still a mess along with the D GO COLTS

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The Bills came in with an emotional high (important in football) from Rex Ryan's debut.  The Colts went out into a cold rain and looked like wet dogs (not everybody) all day.  Stuff happens.  Next game.

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    You know Kenny I'm thinking if not for that bogas holding penalty on that first drive I think we would have been fine, especially if we would have scored on that initial drive.

    I think the jury is out on Pep, don't really think he can handle all the toys. Maybe its time for Andrew to start calling his own plays. I'm thinking we ought to go no huddle/2 min drill, as much as we can the WHOLE game. 

     I'm really liking Anderson and Parry on the D-Line, well as of now anyhow.

     Hell we haven't won a road opener since 2006, so no biggy, right? 

With the Jets coming in and a Titans road game after that, we could be looking at an 0-3 start, OMG!! LOL!

    No I'm looking for Luck and the Gang to have a big one next week on "Monday Night Football"!

    And it was great seeing you at Colts Training Camp this year, we had fun!

 

DaddyJ/Jeffro

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    Another thing Kenny, where were the draw plays and screens? Luck did throw a bad screen pass over the middle to Gore that he couldn't catch, he could have ran that forever, that was on Luck. Luck wasn't sharp anyhow, he knew it. My boy Johnny U. had a field day on teams that blitz and rushed hard with Screens and Draws! Pep need to go to Unitas school.!!!

 

Jeffro

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Thanks #19, Like I said it's 1 game and it happens, I guess the fact that is was the first game and looked so bad that magnifies it, this team will still have a good year, but as far as the Super bowl, it does appear as a long shot at this time, but there is plenty of time to get better , everybody was looking at this year as the year the team finally got over that hump and then laid an egg, I think Luck was the biggest shocker of all, he just did not look good at all

It was great seeing you and everybody at camp, had a great time

Have a good one DaddyJ

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And Jerry Hughes was a bust too. I'll bet when Werner moves on he "suddenly" becomes a decent player. He's a SSDE or a SAM, but they put him where he looks like he does. At FSU he carried 285 pounds and had a lot of power, good SSDE weight. But he ran a 4.85 at the combine, why would anyone think he would be an edge rusher?

Last years drafting of a WR in round 1 was beyond a joke. If we REALLY wanted a WR we should have traded down and gotten an extra 3ed and took one then, there were plenty still available. Rashad Greene went to the Jags in round 5, he looks better than our #1. We didn't fill our needs and we don't coach them up.

Maybe it's just me, but when Pags was out battling cancer Bruce Arians turned out a fantastic product on the field. IMO that was our GM's biggest screw up, letting him walk to the Cardinals, look at what he's done over there..

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What is so discouraging about this organization, if (a big IF) Luck comes close to Manning level accomplishments, which means one more SB and many outstanding regular seasons, we will have wasted the talents of two of the best quarterbacks to have played the game. 

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Sorry but anyone who says opening game history has  not been good in the past  or that the rain hurt the Colts more than the Bills is rationalizing a poor performance by a better than average but not a SB caliber roster.  Applying the logic of not doing well on opening day is like saying we have always won the 7th game every year.  As for the rain excuse, the Bills didn't play between the raindrops last time I checked the film.  I'd like to be more optimistic, but as long as Pagano and Grigson are in the picture, I'm struggling.  I can only hope I'm totally wrong because going through another year of lots of promise and hype and no ring is getting old.

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I hear you and appreciate honest opinions, everybody wants answers and tries to find reasons for what happens and sometimes...make excuses. I just try to give my honest opinion on how I see it...good or bad. The reality is we played like crap in all 3 phases, won't be the first or last time that happens. There does appear to more issues, after that performance that many thought, including myself. But I have also seen that happen, every year and the only thing that really matters, is where we stand, after week #16, not week #1. As bad as it looks now, it does not look as promising as we had hoped, but it can change.....we hope it does.

Fyi- My screen name comes from the Bert Jones era, my fav era of Colts football and my fav player-ever, your sack pack was a big part of that sucess..( it all starts up front!)

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Thanks COLTS 7.  I was part of the Johnny U era and am a New Yorker.  I watched the Greatest Game Ever Played in a room full of NY Giant relatives and they wanted to string me up for rooting for the Colts.  As I said I hope I'm wrong and that this first game was no indication of the rest of the year.  Being in NY I have many friends and relatives who are Jet fans.  We have a 48 hour rule that says no gloating for 48 hours after the game.  I hope I'm not on the receiving end of Wednesday's calls.

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That was another great era, Unitas is legendary and had many great players and lots of sucess. We are all hoping for a better showing tonight and for your sake, even moreso lol

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COLTS7 you said it all.  And let me add that one game DOES define a season, not necessarily this one but the one against the Patriots in October.  If we go 2/3 or 3/2 that game will not only define the season but will tell you all you need to know about the chances of getting to the play-offs. Let's be icy cold about this team, after Luck we have maybe 3-4 quality players, the rest of the team is no more than average.  We have an average coach and a below average GM who can't identify talent with two hands.  Dorsett was a wasted opportunity to address the many real needs of the team.  I don't want to go over all his many  poor choices in talent procurement, but why is Bjorn Werner on this team?  We will need luck (pun intended) to build a team around Andrew that will be competitive enough to be a SERIOUS SB contender with Grigson & Pagano trying to build it.

 

Color me disgusted.

EHRMAN,DUTTON,COOK,BARNES you brought back some great memories loved watching them play along with Bert Jones. We could really use them now.

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