Here's some interesting information on the Colts under the sideline guidance of head coach Chuck Pagano:
I wrote earlier today that the Colts' implosion against the Raiders on Sunday, resulting in a blown 14-point lead by giving up 17 unanswered points, was eerily similar to how the team nearly lost their Week Two match-up against the Minnesota Vikings in 2012. The third game Scott mentioned, the Week Three Jaguars game, is something I seem to have blocked out of my memory.
Oh wait. Nevermind. Now I remember.
Six games. three blown leads. However, only two of those three were loses.
The reason? Andrew Luck.
In both the Raiders game this year and in the Vikings game last year, Luck led the Colts on scoring drives in the fourth quarter to take the lead and win the game. He did nearly the same thing against the Jaguars in Week Three last year as well.
After receiver Cecil Shorts III blew by the Colts secondary for an 80-yard touchdown to take the lead with 56 seconds remaining in the game, Luck and the Colts offense got the ball back with 45 seconds left. Luck drove the Colts to the Jaguars 26-yard line, but his third down throw with two seconds left on the play clock fell incomplete to Reggie Wayne in the endzone.
Again, in all three of these games where leads were blown, Chuck Pagano was on the sidelines running the show.
I asked Scott if he had any insight into games that were coached last season by Bruce Arians (who guided Indy to a 9-3 record while Pagano recovered from cancer treatments) where the Colts blew a 11-14 point lead.
The only late-game lead that Arians let slip away was a seven-point lead against the Chiefs in Week 16, the last game Arians ran as acting head coach before Chuck Pagano returned to the sidelines.
Obviously, the jury is still out on whether Pagano is a "good" head coach, and contrary to what some have freaked out about today on Twitter, I personally never said or thought that Pagano would get fired if the Colts lost to the Raiders.
However, we're seeing a pattern forming here. Like Scott said, it is certainly "not good" to blow double-digit leads. Letting three of them slip away in six games is troubling. Thankfully, only one was a loss.