Was that rough or was that rough?
Last afternoon we got a glimpse of what the Colts team looked like with a star quarterback. Much like in 2011, the product wasn't that great. Fortunately, they didn't have to be great on Sunday. They just had to be good enough, and they were.
I suppose I have to give out some awards from this game, but there wasn't a lot that merited receiving any type of award. Here goes.
MVP - Adam Vinatieri
The oldest player in the league was a huge reason the Colts were able to beat the Jaguars on Sunday. Vinatieri finished 3 of 3 on field goals, and knocked down his only extra point attempt of the day, far better than his Jacksonville counterpart. After a tough first couple of games, it appears Vinatieri is back to what we all expected.
A neat nugget from Vinatieri's field goals. His first moved him ahead of Mike Vanderjagt as the Colts all-time leading scorer. His second helped him become the first NFL player to score over 1,000 points. And his third field goal was the game winner.
You can't ask for a much better day when you're a kicker.
Not Kerry Award - Matt Hasselbeck
Of course, this award is referring to the last time the Colts were without a franchise QB due to injury, and turned to an aging former Titan to carry the load. Obviously, the Kerry Collins experiment was a disaster. The Hasselbeck experiment, less so.
After a dismal pre-season, many (including myself) questioned if Hasselbeck was done and wondered why the Colts were paying him a fair sum of money to sit on the bench. Today we found out why. While I'm sure the plan wasn't to let Hasselbeck throw the ball 47 times, he did what he was asked. No one expected Hasselbeck to break the game open. But he didn't make any glaring errors, didn't turn the ball over, and got the win.
Certainly, I want Andrew Luck back on the field, but things could be a lot worse (think 2011) if Hasselbeck wasn't the back-up QB.
He's Back Award - Coby Fleener
It was nice to hear Fleener's name called with some consistency again, as he had been nearly invisible the first few games.
I'm sure a large chunk of Fleener's contribution have to do with the fact that Pep Hamilton adjusted the offense to better suit Hasselbeck. With more throws shorter and in the middle of the field, Fleener was bound to see more action.
The tight end led the team in catches, yards, and had the only touchdown for the Colts as well. Despite how I seem to often criticize him, I'm a big Fleener fan. Hopefully, the Colts will continue to utilize him more moving forward in a way similar to this game, or similar to his role last season.
Butterfinger Award - Frank Gore
I could handle dropping the ball against the Jets.
Well ok, I couldn't. But I understand that every once and a while something weird happens to even the best football players. To fumble inside the 10 yard line again though? Come on, Gore! If the Colts wanted a running back to have 3.1 yards per carry and fumble in costly situations, they would have kept Trent.
Ok, that's going a bit too far. Still, Gore didn't have a good game averaging 3.1 yards per carry, and only 53 total yards, 22 of which came on one run. Still, now Gore has fumbled twice in the red zone, once severely hurting his team's chance at a comeback, the other (yesterday) nearly costing his team the game.
I like Gore and the dimension he brings to the team, but he can't continue to fumble in these situations.
Burned Toast Award - Darius Butler
In his first game action, Butler looked terrible for the Colts. He got smoked on a long pass, and got beaten for Jacksonville's only touchdown. Those weren't the only times Butler was out of position and beaten yesterday, but they were the most notable.
Moving forward, Butler's presence is important to the defense. I'm aware he was probably shaking a few cobwebs out in his return to real action, but it looked bad. Hopefully he'll be back up to snuff on Thursday against Houston.
LVP - Jason Myers -
You had to know this was coming. Myers is a young kid who, up until this game, had only missed one field goal this season, so I don't want to pour on what I'm sure plenty of others are writing as well.
Still, Myers essentially had three chances to win the game for the Jaguars. He missed the kick where Chuck Pagano "iced" him, but got a re-do. He then missed the re-do. A in overtime, he missed a chance to win the game.
While he had a rough game on Thursday, let's all be thankful it wasn't Josh Scobee out there for the Jaguars today. We know that dude would have found a way to crush our spirit yet again.
It wasn't pretty and sometimes it wasn't fun. But a win is a win is a win and the Colts now sit atop the AFC South all by themselves. A trip to Houston looms next on Thursday night. Until then, we'll be keeping an eye on the status of Luck's shoulder.