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18 Plays (sort of) from the Colts/Texans game
I'm still having mic problems. Here's another transcript.
1. 3-2-IND 37 (12:17) 18-S.Rosenfels pass short right to 80-A.Johnson to IND 18 for 19 yards (41-A.Bethea, 23-T.Jennings).
DZ: Here's the classic "hole in the zone" Jennings has ok coverage on Johnson, until he releases him to Bethea who is late picking him up. That means he's open for a moment, and he converts the first down. If I have to guess, I'd say that's on Bethea more than Jennings.
2. 3-7-HOU 22 (5:48) (Shotgun) 18-P.Manning pass incomplete short middle to 87-R.Wayne.
Demond: Amazing close ups of Manning calling at the line. Felt like a commercial. Unreal. I don't think he would be very happy to know that CBS is doing that. Unacceptable drop.
DZ: Not much to say. Wayne murders the drive with a flat drop. Summed up the first half, really.
3. 1-10-HOU 28 (5:31) 18-S.Rosenfels pass deep left to 83-K.Walter to IND 11 for 61 yards (41-A.Bethea, 58-G.Brackett).
Demond: This is a great play fake right, faked me out badly, but i was in the stands. Ratliff is faked very badly and doesn't get deep enough. Bullitt stays on johnson.
DZ: One of the corners misses his assignment. You can't play zone on two receivers to one side if you only have one safety back. Both corners release their men deep, Bullitt covered the bigger threat. Not really his fault. One of the corners has to stay with his man. My best guess is that Ratliff shouldn't have released Walter.
4. 3-10-IND 26 (2:09) (Shotgun) 18-P.Manning pass short left to 29-J.Addai to IND 38 for 12 yards (52-X.Adibi).
Demond: Great effort by Joe to fight through two tacklers. This element of the Colts game is coming into its own and its starting to remind me of 2006.
DZ: Nice catch by Joe, sliding through two men for the first down.
5. 3-5-HOU 21 (11:44) (Shotgun) 18-P.Manning pass incomplete short right to 29-J.Addai
Demond: He had a man closing on him, but I still think he might have scored. Just unreal.
DZ: The Texans blitz and Joe was the hot read. There were 7 yards between him and the defender. I agree, he had to beat one man and then he would have scored. Ouch.
6. 3-1-HOU 34 (10:49) 30-A.Green left end to HOU 33 for -1 yards (55-C.Session, 91-J.Thomas).
Demond: DRILLED BY SESSION. Holy cow. It looks like they knew the play call because Ratliff, thomas and session come diving across the line.
DZ: Nice call on Ratliff and Thomas. Both are in excellent position to occupy the blockers, giving Session a free release. This was one of the only stops of the game for the Colts. Memo to the NFL: STOP RUNNING WIDE ON THE INDY DEFENSE!
7. 4-6-IND 25 (8:02) 17-H.Smith punts 55 yards to HOU 20, Center-48-J.Snow. 12-J.Jones to IND 41 for 39 yards (85-P.Garcon).
Demond: HOLY WHY? This had my dad and I swearing like pirates up in the stands. Just a horrible turn of events. Stupid rule. Very, very costly because the Texans get a great second return.
DZ: It makes less sense because Reid asked the official if he was ok, and was told yes. The return was awful. Jones splits the two up men and Giordano misses a tackle to give up another 20 yards.
8. 3-8-IND 27 (5:45) 18-S.Rosenfels pass short right to 81-O.Daniels to IND 13 for 14 yards (54-F.Keiaho).
Demond: Freddy Keiaho is not going to cover Daniels in this lifetime. Just not good.
DZ: This is the kind of play that opens up when there is a QB who has the threat to run. Brackett spent most of the day in the 'spy roll' especially preparing for the roll outs. This left Keiaho on Daniels who runs a simple crossing route, and is just too fast. Nice use of personnel by the Texans. That's a mismatch and they found it.
9. 3-2-IND 28 (2:02) (No Huddle, Shotgun) 18-P.Manning pass deep middle to 87-R.Wayne to 50 for 22 yards (26-E.Wilson). PENALTY on IND-67-T.Ugoh, Offensive Holding, 10 yards, enforced at IND 28 - No Play. AND 3-12-IND 18 (1:54) (Shotgun) 18-P.Manning pass deep left to 87-R.Wayne to IND 36 for 18 yards (26-E.Wilson).
Demond: OH MY. What a throw and catch. This was a kick in the balls. Not sure I love the call by the ref. Didn't see much there. On the next play Ugoh does the exact same move but doesn't grab and instead lets the rusher's momentum carry him to the ground. Great adjustment. Reggie runs a crossing route and gets wide open. His speed makes him a hard dude to cover. The crazy thing is the Colts get another 10 yard penalty on the next play. It was amazing that they scored at all.
DZ: The first throw was a sick toss by 18. Ugoh does a better job shoving Williams wide. Wayne catches the simple cross. Other than this drive, Williams was invisible. Seeing as how Manning got them 3 points anyway, that's a win for the Colts on the day.
10. 3-8-HOU 23 (11:14) (Shotgun) 18-P.Manning pass short right to 29-J.Addai for 23 yards, TOUCHDOWN
Demond: Very similar to dom's score last week against Polamalu. He beats Ryan on a juke. Again i think the passes to the backs are huge. This is probably a sign that the line will be okay.
DZ: Harrison clears out the right side and runs a pick to knock the LB off his slot. The corner actually tackles Marvin before the play. The pass and run was beautiful.
11. 3-2-HOU 29 (9:42) 20-S.Slaton right tackle for 71 yards, TOUCHDOWN.
Demond: This play was sad. Steve Slaton nearly killed Gus Johnson with this run. Really irresponsible. Jennings and Bullitt both should have made the play; everyone else just seemed in a hurry to get blocked, especially Giordano.
DZ: Giordano overruns the play; Jennings misses the tackle, and Bullitt takes a horrible angle. Those three names tell you everything you need to know about the Colts D this season. None of them should be playing on a first and 10. All are. Bad things happen when too many backups see the field at once. Even though guys can play well in isolation, when a bunch are on the field together, it can get ugly. This run qualifies.
12. 1-10-IND 20 (9:30) 18-P.Manning pass short right to 11-A.Gonzalez to IND 48 for 28 yards (26-E.Wilson).
Demond: Play action. Manning holds it until the last possible moment. Big gainer.
DZ: ALL DAY to throw. Manning pumps twice and AG comes back some to pick up a huge gain. Great pocket by the line. This kind of play could never have happened 6 weeks ago.
13. 3-3-HOU 22 (:07) 29-J.Addai right tackle to HOU 10 for 12 yards (31-B.Harrison).
Demond: HUGE hole to run through. It was right about here when I thought, you know they might actually be okay. The line is looking like an asset instead of an obstacle.
DZ: Big hole that Addai plows through at full speed. Pollack fires out well on this play
14. 1-10-HOU 10 (15:00) 18-P.Manning pass short right to 88-M.Harrison for 10 yards, TOUCHDOWN.
Demond: Great catch. Great effort. A classic. You can watch this one over and over. Its one of those kind of scores. Not bland at all.
DZ: Simple slant, that Manning puts behind Harrison slightly. He barely even turns, but just sort of snatches the ball and fights for the score. Beautiful.
15. 2-2-HOU 42 (13:39) 18-S.Rosenfels pass deep left to 80-A.Johnson to IND 39 for 19 yards (23-T.Jennings).
Demond: Play action. Tough to defend AJ because you're always worried about the deep ball.
DZ: No pressure at all. Brock and Thomas were the DE's. This drive was miserable by the defense. They simply got blown off the field with a 10 point lead in the fourth quarter. Not cool.
16. 3-7-HOU 35 (4:51) (Shotgun) 18-P.Manning pass short left to 44-D.Clark to HOU 26 for 9 yards (52-X.Adibi).
Demond: Nice quick pattern, just enough protection. Dallas is putting together yet another nice season.
DZ: It looked like Joe was open on the play as well. Nice pocket. Excellent route by Clark. All too easy.
17. 3-9-HOU 25 (3:25) (Shotgun) 18-P.Manning pass short right to 88-M.Harrison to HOU 17 for 8 yards (38-D.Faggins). Indianapolis challenged the first down ruling, and the play was REVERSED. (Shotgun) 18-P.Manning pass short right to 88-M.Harrison to HOU 16 for 9 yards (38-D.Faggins).
Demond: The side judge nearest to the play appears to look across the field and ask another referee where to spot the ball. Something weird happened there. Not sure whose responsibility it is, but they screwed up by a good two feet. Great incut by marvin. The DB seems to know they aren't going deep, so he stays tight and comes up a split second short of breaking it up. Good job of correcting the play by the booth officials. marvin's elbow was down by contact.
DZ: Harrison was the only option on the play. Manning dropped back and threw right in rhythm. It says something that he was the #1 target. The spot was obviously wrong. A good use of replay here. Spot challenges can be ridiculous, but this was text book.
18. 1-10 HOU 36 (1:26) (Shotgun) 18-S.Rosenfels sacked at HOU 29 for -7 yards (93-D.Freeney)
Demond: Freeney sack Houston has the ball and a chance to win after the Colts decide to throw instead of run on third and 7. I almost always side with running clock, because the lack of time kills even the best offenses. Marvin sets a pick for clark who trips and cant make the play. Might have worked, and at the very least might have kept the clock running. On the sack freeney beats his man to the inside with a powerful move and just crushes Rosenfels before he can even think. Should have been holding too. Another hilariously bad throw to end the game. Another forlorn look on Rosenfels face.
DZ: Freeney makes a siiick head and shoulders fake on his man. He plays him outside and jukes inside for the sack. This is a huge play that really kills any real chance of a big comeback drive. Freeney comes up huge again. For the record, I think a run made more sense for the Colts on third down, but the problem with the play was the line. Manning had to throw or take a sack. He decided the yards were worth more than the time.
Demond: I don't know what to make of this team, but I'm so glad it at least has turned into an enjoyable season. 83% of the unbiased general public think the Colts will represent the AFC in the Super Bowl. There's less pressure with no division to win, so you can just sit back and watch the MVP race and watch Marvin get better each week as the line and running game improves. I'm keen to see how he does against SD.
DZ: Just a note for the reader fixated on Travis Johnson's injury being the reason the Colts ran well: it wasn't. Johnson came back and played the rest of the game. The Colts ran better because they blocked better.
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