Sunday, September 16, 2012
Wrap-up: Colts 23, Vikings 20
By Paul Kuharsky
Thoughts on the Colts' 23-20, last-second win over the Minnesota Vikings at Lucas Oil Stadium:
What it meant: A first win for head coach Chuck Pagano and quarterback Andrew Luck and a lot of others in the revamped organization. The Colts may wind up being one of the NFL’s lesser teams this season, but they proved capable of beating another team that falls into the same category.
What I liked: Luck is just fantastic on the move, whether it’s a relatively small step up or slide over or a big rollout or run away from pursuit. Obviously he cannot lose 22 yards trying to run out of a late sack and has to surrender at times. But his skills on the move remain underrated.
Four sacks from the defense which held running back Adrian Peterson to 3.8 yards a carry on 16 chances were great defensive developments.
Adam Vinatieri was clutch with the 53-yard, game-winning field goal with eight seconds left.
A couple of finds: Receiver Donnie Avery will need chances to provide more evidence. But a veteran who the Titans couldn’t get anything out of last season had a very productive day with nine catches on 10 targets for 111 yards. On defense, Jerrell Freeman proved a good replacement for Pat Angerer (foot). Freeman had a team-high 13 tackles with a sack and a forced fumble.
What I didn’t like: The defense did some good things, certainly. But it can’t allow a nine-play, 47-yard, 2:19 drive for a game-tying touchdown with 31 seconds left in the game.
The rushing offense has to find a way to get more than 2.8 yards a carry, a number that drops to 2.4 if you take Luck’s running out of it.
What’s next: The Colts host the 0-2 Jaguars. Jacksonville lost at Minnesota in overtime in Week 1 and the Colts are coming off a home win over the Vikings.