Folks, I'm not going to lie to you. I was a little disappointed with our Colts Sunday. Now before you skewer me for complaining about a win just hear me out with a semi-objective mind (at least).
Now I am happy about the win. Victory is victory whether it taste sweet like a pina colada (after a dominating win or hard fought game against a tough opponent; neither was the case for the Colts Sunday), or if its something your just glad to have like a cool Miller Lite on a scorcher of a day over the alternative (nothing).
This win was more like the cool Miller Lite.
That first drink is the best. It's nice and cool, goes down easy, and is good and refreshing. As the alcohol starts to relax you ever so slightly your beer warms up and doesn't really taste that good anymore. However, you don't have anything else to drink so its finish the beer or nothing at all.
The beginning of the game yesterday was great. Andrew Luck looked like a surgeon performing a very delicate operation as he slowly yet surely marched the team down the field. That first drive was great--11 plays covering 80 yards and over a half of the first quarter. Awesome!
Of course the Browns did the same, but missed the extra point effectively taking away the competitive advantage the Colts just gained. How do you respond to such a drive? With one of your own!
For an encore Luck took the team on a 14-play, 76-yard drive over roughly six minutes of the second quarter. Oh--and did I mention how the first drive ended? No? The same way that the second ended--with Luck running it in himself.
Those two drives got me excited. They reminded me of what Warren Moon used to do back in his days with the Houston Oilers. I can remember watching many a game where he would have incredibly long drives; I'm talking 16, 17, 18 plays or more as well more than half a quarter off the clock (often times easily over 10 minutes of game time.
That kind of ball control is intense and very hard to do; especially for passing oriented teams. To see our boy do that (excuse me; gotta wipe away a tear of pride) gave me all kinds of hope as to how well the boys can do this season.
It was all downhill from there.
I could forgive the final drive of the first half; at that point it was the exception and not the rule. The opening drive of the second was alright (17 plays, 61 yards, over eight minutes for a field goal). It was the rest of the game that was-for lack of a better word--eh.
Rather than pounce on the Browns and blow them out of the stadium the offense became stagnant and did little to nothing for the rest of the game. Luckily the Browns did the same so it didn't really matter in the end.
The Colts are still a new team. They've got a lot to learn about the team's scheme as well as how to play with each other. Before those things happen and everybody gets on the same page victories will be harder to come by.
Not impossible (as Sunday showed us); just hard.
Going forward it will be interesting to see if the Colt can maintain their new found running game. Rookie Vick Ballard didn't look to bad getting 84 yards on 20 carries and Delone Carter tacked on another 41. Add on Luck's 12 and Mewelde Moore's 11 and the Colts actually had 148 yards rushing (just under what the Patriots average a game with the No. 5 rushing attack in the league; the Colts average less than 100).
So it was a shame that the team couldn't put the Browns away, but in the end they got the one thing that matters-- a win.
And a win is a win is a win is a win.
Oh--and along with the win came some good news. Head coach Chuck Pagano is out of the hospital and was able to watch the game from the comfort of his own home. Keep fighting the good fight Couch, and don't worry--we got this.