2010 Week One: Inside The Colts Numbers

HOUSTON - SEPTEMBER 12: Running back Joseph Addai #29 of the Indianapolis Colts rushes up the middle over cornerback Kareem Jackson #25 of the Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium on September 12 2010 in Houston Texas. Houston won 34-24. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)

Everyone has (hopefully) calmed a bit after the 34-24 beating the Colts took Sunday afternoon in Houston.  It was very obvious to see how the Colts lost, which, if you've been around here long enough, you know is completely opposite what we preach: Passing the ball and stopping the pass are more important than running the ball and stopping the run.  The Texans thoroughly dominated the Colts defensive line and linebackers, and Arian Foster has now become a household name. (Confession:  I drafted him in the SB A Fantasy League.  He had 42.8 points.)  While everyone will now point to this game to prove their point; it is, in fact, an exception to the rule.  We have 9 years worth of data to prove it.

Some notes from the game:

  • Foster's 231 yards rushing was second all time on opening weekend to O.J. Simpson's 250 yards in 1973.  It also is the most rushing yards allowed by the Colts all-time, topping the 216 yards given up to Barry Sanders in 1997.  Ugh.
  • This was the first time the Colts had lost a September road game since 2004, when they lost on Opening Weekend to the Patriots.  They had won 8 straight, one short of the NFL record.  Pretty amazing if you think about it.
  • The 433 yards Peyton Manning threw for on Sunday were easily the most he has thrown on Opening Weekend, and third most in his career.  His previous high on Opening Weekend was his first game in the NFL, when he threw for 302 against the Dolphins.

After the jump we'll see how the Colts did in all aspects of the game, with the Winning Stats:

Colts totals for Week 1:

Statistic Offense Rank Defense Rank Off/Def Above Off/Def Below Record
DSR 80.0% 3 84.4% 32 N N 3-1
ANPY/A 8.119 5 3.842 10 Y N 7-3
Turnovers 1 8 1 15 N N 4-2
Yds/Drive 46.30 2 39.44 30 N N 5-3
ToP/Drive 2:54.7 9 3:25.9 30 N N 6-2
Yds/Play 6.710 1 5.820 25 N N 6-4
First Downs/Drive 2.50 2 2.56 32 N N 6-1
3rd/4th Down 38.5% 15 58.3% 30 N Y 7-2
Avg Start Pos 27.8 21 31.5 22 N Y 7-1
3 and Outs 1 1 2 25 N N 3-1
RZ Eff 81.0% 8 81.0% 23 N N 7-1
Plays/Drive 6.900 4 6.778 27 N N 5-2
Penalty Yds / Play 1.058 22 0.820 16 N Y 6-3
RB Success 50.0% 7 73.8% 31 N N 3-3
Yds/Carry 4.40 12 6.12 31 N N 4-4
Net Punts Yds/Game 27.80 30 39.00 14 N Y 2-5
Ranking - Week (32) 3 31 17
Ranking - Season (32) 3 31 17

Some thoughts:

  • The Offense, while only scoring 24 points, played quite well, ranking 3rd in the league.  Now, this doesn't account for the defense faced, so that'll move as we get more data from the season.  Particularly good were Yards/Play (helped by the 73 yard TD to Collie), 3 and Outs (only 1), and Drive Success Rate.
  • If the Colts moved the ball so well, then how did they only have 10 points in the first 3 and a half quarters?  Check out 3rd/4th Down Conversions at 38.5%.  This is well below the standard the Colts have set for themselves over the years.  Several key drops and offensive line lapses led to these struggles.  Definitely something to work on.
  • The defense stopped the pass, when the Texans actually passed, which was the only bright spot for the defense.  There really is nothing to point at and say "They did ok there."  Much like the Miami game last year, they just got beat down physically. 
  • The Colts weren't the worst defense this weekend.  That belongs to the Cincinnati Bengals, who were destroyed by the Patriots.  Only one way to go from here, and that's up.  Hopefully they can turn it around like they did last year after Week 2.
  • Overall, according to the Winning Stats, this was the most even game of the weekend.  At least the Colts weren't like the Cowboys and Chargers, who both really outplayed their opponent, but lost.  Look for these things to even out over the course of the season.  While the way the Colts lost looked extremely bad, things could be a lot worse.

In later weeks, I'll also be including Season Totals, which will list the best team in the NFL in that category.  Also, each week I'll have a separate post with a Power Ranking, Strength of Schedule, Future Schedule Strength, and a Consistency ranking.  I'll start these rankings around Week 4, once we have a little more data.

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