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Washington Commanders at Indianapolis Colts Recap and Reactions




















Sam Ehlinger: 17/23, 201 YDS

Taylor Heinicke: 23/31, 279 YDS, 1 TD, 1 INT


Jonathan Taylor: 16 ATT, 76 YDS

Taylor Heinicke: 6 ATT, 29 YDS, 1 TD


Alec Pierce: 3 REC, 65 YDS

Terry McLaurin: 6 REC, 113 YDS

Every week I feel like I come into these articles saying “yuck” or “ugh” even when we win, I am so sick and tired of this football team and supporting them. The offensive line is such a problem it’s ridiculous, even our best guy Quenton Nelson is playing average? Ever since he got paid he has just given up on even trying, it really makes no sense how bad this team is and it all comes down to coaching and the offensive line, your 3 wide receivers are showing to be stars, Pittman Jr, Pierce and Campbell are all showing out right now, you have 3 #1 running backs in JT, Hines and Deon Jackson, 2 monster tight ends that are both over 6’6, your defense has allowed over 20 points only 3 times this season, one of them was in a shutout with a perennial pro-bowler in Stephon Gilmore, Darius Leonard (who had a interception in his first game back, I already called that he would be important to our turnover game in my preview, fuck you), DeForest Buckner and 7 pro-bowlers from last season and some how they are 3-4-1, the loss in Jacksonville was the most embarrassing loss in franchise history, but this season could be the most embarrassing season in franchise history, the amount of confidence and excitement that Jim Irsay, Frank Reich and Chris Ballard relayed to the fans about how good this team could be has completely backfired on them, every year it’s the same old thing, the team is really talented and all the same bullshit, I don’t understand how Frank has a job, Andrew Luck and his playoff comeback in the 90’s has given him job security for years on end. In 40 years he will be 100 years old still coaching the Colts from his hospital bed, still saying “we just have to climb that mountain” with Frank Reich Jr standing next to him just waiting for him to give up the coaching spot to continue the Reich reign of terror, every year the Colts will go 8-8-1 with a FUCKING TIE TO THE HOUSTON TEXANS and their starting quarterback will be 40+ because we need the veteran leadership with 1 or 2 signature wins 12 games into the season then collapsing in the final few game to miss the playoffs again. I am so sick and tired, you know what? I am just disappointed, every Sunday I sit my ass down and waste 3 hours of my life watching this team run the same offensive plays that a 5 year old could call with the Madden recommendations and play defense just good enough to lose by 2 points because the offense can’t score. God help us all Colts fans, our only savior is the HOPE that Sam Ehlinger can become something special, but hope is what keeps us afloat right? The dream of Sam being the guy can lift us up and transform us, it can keep us afloat because I swear if Ehlinger isn’t the guy, I may lose my mind, I don’t pray too much and I don’t pray for the Colts because god has too many things to worry about to add on a mediocre football franchise, but I’m at the limit, that prayer may come soon because good lord only god can help us now. 

Believe it or not, there was some positives that came from the game yesterday, I was very happy with Sam Ehlinger’s play to start and how he was used by the coaching staff, they were able to really play to his strengths but his issues were the turnovers and in crunch time, the play calling fell, his fumble was a rookie mistake and you have to expect those turnovers, his first start will not be perfect but I would say he kept the mistakes minimal, the fumble was a back breaker though, we lost at least 3 points on that. He was 17/23 for 201 yards with no interceptions while taking 2 sacks for 12 yards he had a 100.1 rating to add onto that, he ran the ball 6 times for 15 yards, that included a rush on a broken down play late in the game where he was a yard short of the first down to continue the drive and run the clock down, it’s hard to blame him because of the 2 plays before were runs up the middle, putting Ehlinger in a tough position, forcing him to make a play, that will push us into one of the offensive keys to the game.

Offensive Keys to the Game

  1. Make it Easy on Ehlinger: Well, you didn’t, you put him in a position, late in the game, where he HAD to get 6-7 yards on third down to basically win the game, you can’t put that on a rookie in his first start. If they threw it 2 downs in a row I would be happier, take a shot on 1st down, the defense played a cover 1 with a wide open weak side, they should have kept the same formation and run play action and have Pittman run an outside dig route towards the sideline, the outside linebacker would have bit on the play thinking Pittman was going to run a go route and left the underneath open with only one guy to help on defense after the first line. The very next play was another run up the middle out of shotgun, the strong side saw Campbell and Pittman with Campbell in the slot, the Commanders dropped their safety into cover 2 when the ball was snapped and Campbell had nobody in front of him for 15 or 20 yards, now anyone looking at that play would say, “well the middle linebacker was there” but you can tell he was ready for a run play, as soon as the ball moved towards Taylor he jumped towards the line, just run another play action and you would have a first down. If anything, you could have ran the ball to the outside on a pitch play on the final play of the drive on 3rd and 5, the defense dropped into coverage putting only 4 guys on the line, all time blunders of play calling from Frank there who had a good day almost all game on his play calling, how does he have a job.
  2. Use Taylor: If I said Taylor would rush for 4.75 yards per carry, how many yards do you think he would have total? 100? 125? How many carries, considering there is also a rookie quarterback in his NFL game? 25? 30? 35??? No, only 16 carries for 76 yards, it seems like they again gave up on the running game, I know he fumbled in a big spot and I am not glossing over that, that was at least 3 points we gave away there, Taylor knows better than anyone, sandwich that ball while you’re running, use both arms to protect the ball, he knows that more than anyone, that run was in the RedZone for a 1st down as well, but he is still a monster in the running game, I said if they don’t use him more than 20 times, everyone should be fired, remember, when he rushes for over 100 yards, the Colts are 12-1-1 in his career, the only loss came against the Raiders just after Christmas Day last year. His last 100+ yard game was against Houston week 1 with a tie, so the colts were 12-0 when he ran for over 100 yards, and somehow he still avoids using Taylor, only 4 of his 100+ rush yard games were when he had under 20 rush attempts, 10/3 at Miami he went for 16 attempts and 103 yards, 10/17 vs Houston he rushed 14 times for 145, on 10/24 he rushed 18 times for 107 yards and 11/4 against the Jets he rushed 19 times for 172 including a 78 yard touchdown rush in that game, take that away and he went 18 times for 94 yards. All those games were in a 6 game span, besides that he needs 20 attempts at the minimum.
  3. Use Hines: Well, you did that pretty well, he had 5 attempts for 20 yards and a touchdown on the ground as well as 2 receptions for 29 yards including an over the shoulder grab on a beautiful corner route towards the sideline right into the breadbasket to set up his touchdown, I still want to see more from him, stop trying to run a bubble screen with Granson or Campbell and keep trying with Hines, run those wheel routes to the outside and use him on outside pitch plays if you’re so afraid of running them with Taylor, he ran a 4.38 40 and a 4.35 shuttle, lets not forget the fastest 40 time EVER was 4.22 by John Ross. 

Defensive Keys to the Game

  1. Win the Turnover Battle: Once again, you lost a game you lose the turnover battle in, along with giving the ball away, you struggled to get turnovers, there were many opportunities, including Stephon Gilmore getting absolutely MOSSED against Terry McLaurin for the biggest play of the game, there is another way to look at this though, the defense still only gave up 17 points and still lost, how can you be too mad when they got an interception? You fumbled twice so I can’t come over here and say this is totally to blame. 
  2. Attack Heinicke: 2 sacks on the day from Gus Bradley’s bunch, but again, the blunders come late in the game, on the Commanders final drive, the Colts did not send 5 once, they sent 4 on every single play, giving Heinicke unlimited time to throw, on that 4th down play, Heinicke was scrambling and was given 5 seconds from the time he received the ball until he threw the ball, on the deep pass to McLaurin, he was given 6 seconds in a clean pocket, he didn’t have to scramble or anything, all while the Colts sent 4. Bradley was playing to NOT lose the game but that never works, play defense like you did the rest of the game, get after him and punish him, force him to make mistakes.
  3. Shut Down the Middle: Darius Leonard made his appearance known with his 12 career interception, first among active linebackers since 2018, but they had trouble with the short passes, Heinicke picked apart the Colts in the middle of the field and on short dump off passes, every play they dropped the defense back assuming a 10-15 yard pass when Antonio Gibson would get a 3 yard pass and take it 18 yards. 

Also, wtf is with Frank and the unnecessary challenges? Last week he did it too, don’t they have a guy who tells him to do it? He doesn’t even give them a chance to look at the plays, it would have been real nice to have that extra time out at the end there. 

Moving on, we can’t hold onto the games for too long, it’s Patriots hate week! Let the hate flow through your veins! Go Colts!