As a home grown Wisconsinite, it brings me great joy when the Colts can beat the Packers. And now, it has happened twice in a row. Four more years of bragging rights for me.
But really, I don't think anyone really thought the Colts would win this one. With a banged up secondary, it seemed like the perfect storm for Aaron Rodgers to have a field day. Especially against a defense that was torched by the likes of Nick Foles, Brock Osweiler, and Brian Hoyer. In fact, most of the NFL on Fox pre-game hosts had the Packers as their lock of the week. I certainly didn't expect a win.
MVP - Jordan Todman
Yes, I'm giving the nod to the kick returner here. Todman set the tone for the Colts on the opening kickoff, running it back 99 yards for the score. It was the Colts first kick return for a score since 2012, and their first opening kick return for a score since 1995. On Todman's second return, he took the ball deep into Green Bay territory, setting up another score. All in all, Todman averaged 80 yards per return (he only had two), with 160 total yards.
As a team on the season, the Colts have 545 return yards, and Todman accounted for 160 of those yesterday. His explosive returns helped swing the momentum to the Colts early, helping them build an early lead which they never (but almost) relinquished.
The Drive Award - End of First Half
Ok, so this isn't quite on the scale of The Drive. But still, after another ill advised Chester Rodgers fair catch, the Colts had the ball deep in their own territory with a little over five minutes to go in the first half. Andrew Luck and the Colts proceeded to march 96 yards on 15 plays to score another touchdown before the half. It was something we haven't seen a lot of from the Colts offense this year. An efficient drive ending in a touchdown. The drive ended in a beautiful back shoulder tn pass from Luck to Donte Moncrief.
X Factor Award - T.Y. Hilton
There was a question of if Hilton would play this week with a gimpy hamstring. He did, and it's a good thing. Luck looked for Hilton when he needed yards, including the game clinching pass with two minutes to go. This year, in games where Hilton has over 80 yards receiving, the Colts are 4-0. When he has less, they are 0-5. So to say that Hilton needs to be involved in the offense is a bit of an understatement.
First Time Award - Adam Vinatieri
I thought this was an interesting stat. Yesterday was the first time ever that Vinatieri made a field goal in Lambeau Field. More amazing, it was only the third game (I think that's right) he had ever played in the stadium. Still, the future Hall of Famer has now made kicks in 41 different stadiums, and 30 of the current stadiums. The only two he hasn't made a kick in? CenturyLink Field and US Bank Stadium. The Colts head to Minnesota this year, and Seattle next year.
Hustle Award - The squirrel
I just had to mention this.
LVP - Fourth Quarter Defense
All game the Colts shut down the Packers offense until the late stages of the fourth quarter. Here, the Colts played mostly base defense, allowing Rodgers to find short to medium throws underneath. This, coupled with the missed tackling we've become accustomed to, fueled a late surge from the Packers. The Colts defense has been an issue late in games all year, and that continued against Green Bay. Fortunately, it didn't cost the Colts this week.