When you think back fondly on the short-lived Kerry Collins experiment, you know it's bad.
Today's 17-3 disaster was the worst and most embarrassing defeat of the year. Worse than then 34-7 beat-down in Houston? Yes. Worse than the 62-7 shellacking in New Orleans? Yep. Well, ok maybe not (the Saints game was epically terrible), but it's equally as bad. At least those other two embarrassments came against playoff teams with explosive offenses and in both games, at least we scored a touchdown.
Today the Colts lost to a team that many thought was as bad as the Colts, until they saw the actual game.
This effort was so pathetic and listless the only reason worth watching was for comic effect. Against the Saints and Texans, the Colts were hopelessly outmatched. Against the Jags there was no effort, no inspiration, no heart. The last time they the Colts were held to three points? 2005 AFC Championship game on the road, in the freezing cold against a fantastic New England Defense.
Today's team was not the Colts we used to know. Unless the entire staff (coaches and medical trainer) and several players are shown the door, this will be the team and effort we should be prepared for.
I have spent the entire season trying to focus on the positives, highlight the good things that players (and coaches) are doing. But if the coaches and players don't try why should I? If the coaches and players don't seem to care why should the fans?
Today's effort and game plan was beyond inexcusable. For nine weeks now, we've believed that 95% of the problem was in the difference of quarterback play. Are we still so sure about that? I'm not.
Even the defensive effort, which appeared to be decent, really wasn't. The Jags rushed for 141 yards (22 yards above their average). When did holding a team to 141 yards become decent? The Jags also put up their second highest point total of the season. That should tell you just about how awful they are (their highest output was 20) and how unimpressive the Colts defense was. Forget about the fact that the Jags have MDJ, if you are a proud football team, you expect to hold teams below there averages, you expect better.
Everyone is responsible for this loss and mess. Everyone. Sure it's easy to pile on Curtis Painter (and I will tomorrow), but this implosion goes beyond him.
Manning's injury is a tired and pathetic excuse. There needs to be accountability and leadership and right now there is none. Every single player, coach and front office personnel should be ashamed. There will be better days head, but after each performance like we saw today, they seem further and further in the distance.