(2 of 2) PREVIOUS 1 | 2
4.What about Bob? The more time passes, the less time Colts safety Bob Sanders has to return this season. That’s obvious, but it also should also seem obvious by now that the Colts think there’s a very real chance Sanders can make a serious contribution in the final weeks. If not, considering the rash of injuries the team has undergone, they certainly would have placed him on injured reserve. Is it a gamble? Yes. But it’s also a smart one. Considering Sanders’ ability to elevate a defense and the players on it, his return would give the Colts one more impact, game-changing players and the Colts’ defense with a healthy Sanders is one that could play well enough to win in the playoffs – even on the road.
3.Repeating a theme. It’s been said in Magnificent Seven and on Indy Football Report several times in recent weeks, but it bears repeating that the Colts remain the favorite in the AFC South. It has become vogue in some national circles to call the Jaguars the favorites, but while Jacksonville is far better than many believe, the Colts’ schedule still gives them as good a chance as any to win the division. The Colts play three of five games at home and the Jaguars – who have struggled on the road after Thanksgiving in recent seasons – play three of five on the road. The Colts obviously have to start winning – and that must begin Sunday – but to paint them as anything but a team with solid playoff chances is to focus too much on injuries and not enough on a roster that still includes Manning, Wayne, Dwight Freeney, Robert Mathis, Antoine Bethea, Jerraud Powers and Kelvin Hayden.
2.A big concern. A major concern for the Colts entering Sunday’s game is blocking Cowboys linebacker DeMarcus Ware. And with reason. If you’re myopic and only focus on the Colts and AFC, you’re probably still aware of Ware, but you may not realize just how impressive his numbers have been in recent seasons. He has 74 sacks in six seasons, and since registering eight in his rookie season, he has never been below double digits for a season. He had 20 a couple of years ago, and getting 20 one season is impressive, Ware has packaged consistent seasons around that one, and is a constant threat. He has 9.5 sacks thiss season, and how Indianapolis gets him blocked obviously will be critical.
1.A real issue. Interesting stuff from Wayne Friday about the trouble he has had at times with the lights at Lucas Oil Stadium. Said without question it was an issue on the long throw that bounced off his helmet in the second quarter. “Normally, when you see the ball released from Peyton’s hand, you keep track of it, but when he already has thrown the ball, you have to look up,” he said. “The first thing you look at is right in them lights. It tends to blind me – it seems like more than others.” Also interesting was how Wayne handled questions about some of the drops he has had this season. It’s not a comfortable question to answer, but Wayne said, yes, he believed he had missed on two many balls he should have caught. He said he usually figures he’ll have one about every four games, and said he had had six or seven the season, and said that was too many. A typical response from Wayne, who typically is honest and up front whatever the issue. “You want to go through each year with four drops – max,” Wayne said. “I’m probably somewhere in the six, range, seven range.” Wayne said the number was “way too many. You know one’s going to happen,” Wayne said. “I usually try to give myself at least one per quarter. I know I’m probably double that, so hopefully, I’ve had my run with them.”