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Monday, October 14, 2013
Morning Links: Colts' secondary improved

By Eric D. Williams

Good morning. Scott Hansen of Pro Football Focus gives us three things to focus on in tonight’s Indianapolis Colts -- San Diego Chargers matchup.

Hansen points to San Diego quarterback Philip Rivers matching up with the Indianapolis defensive backfield, Colts receivers battling with the Chargers’ secondary and the Colts’ interior offensive line facing San Diego’s interior defensive line as three things to watch for this evening.

Hansen: “Although the Colts’ pass defense doesn’t look incredibly imposing on paper, they have allowed the sixth-fewest passing yards per game this season, in addition to a QB Rating of just 68.4 against them. No individual member of the secondary has been beaten consistently, while Darius Butler and Vontae Davis have been particularly solid. One area the Colts will need to clean up is the coverage of their inside linebackers, who will likely see a lot of Antonio Gates as well as Woodhead in coverage."

ESPN’s Mike Wells writes that the Colts' defense will have their hands full dealing with Rivers.

Bill Simmons of Grantland takes the points and the Chargers over the Colts in his weekly picks. Simmons: “Yes, I'm riding the "Everyone who plays the super-physical Seahawks is bruised and battered the following week" theory and picking against the Colts, a team that I've actually come to respect as a legitimate Super Bowl contender, if only because of Andrew Luck (as covered earlier).”

Micheal Gelken of U-T San Diego writes that defensive lineman Cam Thomas is San Diego’s team leader in interceptions, which shows the secondary's struggles.

Kevin Acee of U-T San Diego says that the Chargers' inability to sell nearly 9,000 tickets for tonight’s game points to a larger issue -- a dilapidated stadium and an apathetic fan base could have the team playing elsewhere in the future.

• Sterling Sharpe and Brian Baldinger of NFL playbook break down tonight's matchup in this video link.

If the season ended today, the 2-3 Chargers would be a game back of Miami (3-2) for the final AFC Wild Card spot.

Chris Burke of Sports Illustrated says San Diego’s powder blue jerseys are the best throwback uniforms in the NFL.