The Indianapolis Colts continued to struggle against the very hot Arizona Cardinals. Indianapolis had been able to come from behind and win close games in recent weeks, but the Cardinals put there foot on the gas, and never let up. With a 24-point halftime lead, the Cardinals were never in danger of losing control of the game.
The Colts continue to describe themselves as a running football team, but once again against the Cardinals, that proved to be nothing more than wishful thinking. Last season, the Colts were able to win by airing it out. Now, that same team is struggling, largely because they’ve become a one-dimensional team. The question is, why did their offense work a season ago but is failing them now?
Frankly, the Colts’ offensive woes are the consequence of a number of factors. Obviously, the Colts have struggled to run the football lately, but that’s nothing new to the Colts. They built an empire under Peyton Manning without a real running game.
The bigger problems seem to revolve around the passing game. Certainly the absence of wide receiver Reggie Wayne has left Andrew Luck with no veteran targets to hit on third down. In addition, Andrew Luck is constantly harassed in the pocket, and he’s rarely given the opportunity to scan the field for any period of time before being pressured.
The final, and most interesting, point to mention is the mistakes that Andrew Luck continues to make. Although Luck only threw one interception, it was a pass taken back for a touchdown by the Cardinals, and it’s the type of play that reminds us Luck is good, but he’s nowhere near the level of Peyton Manning. The best quarterbacks in the league don’t take such low-reward risks. In case you missed it, Luck was being sacked but was able to throw the ball to a nearby receiver. Unfortunately, Karlos Dansby was all over it, and made the easy interception.
In addition to their offensive woes, the Colts are struggling to make plays on defense as well. The Colts appear to be regressing at this point in the season, which is exactly the opposite of what they’re trying to accomplish. In the weak AFC South, the Colts aren’t in danger of losing their division lead, but they have to clean up a lot of problems to get back to playing competitive football. If they don’t, they’ll be one and done once again in postseason action.