After being on hiatus for a few weeks, I'm happy to be back with some more Throwback Thursday action!
Since it (fortunately) hasn't happened too much, especially in recent history, I wanted to focus this week's Throwback on the Colts' record. In recent years, the Colts haven't always lost five games, let alone by the halfway point in the season.
Currently, the Colts are sitting at 3-5 and face the Denver Broncos next. I wanted to throw back to the last time the Colts were sitting at 3-5 with eight games to go. To find this, I had to go back 21 years to the 1994 season.
That season, the Colts got off on the right foot, taking down the Houston Oilers at home. What followed was three straight losses to drop Indy to 1-3 heading into December. From Weeks 5-16 of the season, the Colts actually alternated wins and losses each week, until winning their remaining two games to close out the season.
They were dropped to 3-5 after getting outgunned 41-27 at home by the Washington Redskins in Week 8. The Colts would remain home for their Week 9 contest against their division rival, the New York Jets.
The Jets, on the other hand, were entering the contest sitting at 4-3, and were coming off of the Bye. I also want to make a note that this Jets team was coached by none other than Pete Carroll.
The Week 9 match-up would be the second of the two games between the two on the season. The Jets had emerged victorious in Week 6, beating the Colts 16-6 in the Meadowlands.
This time, the Colts got started hot in the first quarter. Quarterback Don Majkowski found Floyd Turner from 14 yards out to give the Colts a 7-0 early lead. Then, still in the first quarter, Majkowski scampered six yards to tack on a rushing touchdown. It was 14-0 Colts after one.
In the second, the Jets began to crawl back into the game.
Boomer Esiason found Art Monk for a 22 yards pass to cut the Colts' lead in half. Later in the second, Nick Lowery added a field goal for New York to send the game into halftime at 14-10, with the Colts still holding the slight advantage.
To start the third, the Colts extended the lead to 21-10 when Marshall Faulk found the end zone from a yard out. The lead wouldn't last, though, when Mo Lewis picked off a Majkowski pass and brought it all the way back for a touchdown. Esiason would toss the two-point conversion to Rob Moore, slicing the Colts lead down to 21-18.
Three points would be as close as the Jets would ever get, though. In the fourth, Faulk again found the end zone, this time on a 29 yard run to bolster the Colts' lead back to 10. However, before the game was over Esiason found Moore on a 41 yard strike to pull the Jets within three.
That would be the final score, however, with the Colts knocking off their division rivals 28-25.
On the stats side of things, the Colts dominated in the run game. Faulk did most of the heavy lifting, running for 110 yards and two scores, as the Colts compiled 179 yards on the ground, as opposed to only 159 through the air.
The defense also kept the Jets in check. New York ran for only 57 yards, and Esiason only threw for 201 yards, despite putting the ball in the air 41 times (he completed only 22 of those passes).
A surprising number, though was in the turnover department. The Colts did themselves no favors by turning the ball over 5 times (two picks and three fumbles) yet still won the game. Not a recipe for success, but it worked on that afternoon.
The Colts would go on to finish 8-8 and third place in the AFC East. The Jets, on the other hand, would drop to 6-10, finishing in the basement of the East.