Once again, the Rookie was asked to carry the team, throwing for 313 yards, and running for another 50. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Remember when you were 16 and you just got your license? You passed all the tests and proved to the instructor and your folks that you could drive? But Dad only lends you the car on necessary occasions, to run errands or go to school? He doesn't actually give you the car....
Well it seems like thats the relationship between Andrew Luck and his coaches. Of course, in this scenario, Luck can't be compared to some newbie beginning to drive as he seems more apt to drive a racecar. For the second time in as many games, we've seen the coaching staff go all conservative after gaining a two possession lead.
Many of us voiced concern at this last game, but we still weren't sure if it was a pattern or just occasional. Well, I think we got a better understanding today.
First comes the calls after halftime. For the second straight game, the Colts failed to accomplish anything after halftime. Much of the blame falls on the coaches who failed to make halftime adjustments. Or perhaps, they just never expected us to lead in games... But the calls themselves - instead of keeping the ball in Luck's hands (our primary playmaker), we've decided to run it. And run it stubbornly.
Although the OL did better today (they were quite decent actually), we're still not a running team. We will not pick up first downs through stubborn rushing... although every now and then we may get a good gain. The Coaches know that. But instead of trying to take some shots at increasing the lead in the manner we attained it, the Colts play to contain the game, not run away with it (figure of speech).
Then comes the time to play catch up.... Once again we needed Luck to save the day. But once again something interesting happened. With under two minutes, Luck drives us into field goal range. But instead of keeping the drive alive, we run it 3 straight times for one yard....
WHAT THE HELL IS UP WITH THAT? It seems that the coaches have no problem letting Luck do his thing with under two minutes because THEY HAVE NO CHOICE. But now, with under 2 minutes, and in field goal range... "well," they think, "we can just kick a field goal for the lead. Why do anything else?"
And herein lies the problem. When given a choice, the coaches decided to not trust Luck. We could have gone for a touchdown. At the very least, gain a few more yards and keep the clock running. The scenario would have been completely different. Maybe we score a TD +2, making the score 22-16. Then the defense could have played contain a TD, instead of with the mindset contain a FG (HUGE difference). Even more important, we could have run down the clock.
SO WHY THE F*** DIDNT WE DO THAT?
Well... because we cant let our kiddie QB run this team yet. We cant give him the car.
I'm disappointed. Time and time again our coaches laud Andrew. But when it comes time, they fail to trust him to secure the ball and burn a few seconds.
We shoulda gone for the TD. And we should always try to score... not just when we need to.