The Indianapolis Colts on Sunday notched their biggest win of the season as they defeated the Green Bay Packers 31-26 at Lambeau Field, putting together a good performance all-around on offense, defense, and special teams.
I'm sure it's always better to take a look at the snap counts following a win than it is to look at them following a loss, so let's look at how much each player was on the field on Sunday during the Colts' win and see what we can learn.
- Jonotthan Harrison got his first start of the season on Sunday, which was expected when considering the fact that Joe Reitz and Jack Mewhort were both out with injuries. Harrison started at left guard, while Joe Haeg moved to right tackle.
- Things were finally back to normal for the Colts' wide receiver position, as Donte Moncrief and T.Y. Hilton were the top two skill position players when it comes to snap counts. Moncrief played 66 snaps, while Hilton - likely still hampered by his hamstring a bit - played 59. Both guys played well too, as Hilton caught six passes for 82 yards and Moncrief caught three passes for 55 yards and a touchdown.
- It was also good to see that even with Dwayne Allen back (and since he wasn't 100% he was likely limited at least somewhat) the Colts still used Jack Doyle and Erik Swoope. Doyle played the bulk of the snaps at tight end, which is a good thing: he's been their best tight end this year, and he was again on Sunday - catching five passes for 61 yards and also making some nice blocks. Erik Swoope only played nine snaps, but he caught a pass for seven yards. It's hard to get all three tight ends legitimate snaps, but it'd be nice to keep Swoope going a bit as he's done some good things in the receiving game in Allen's absence. And in his return to the field, Allen played 65% of the snaps and caught one pass for 15 yards.
- The most notable thing here is that the Colts made some interesting changes with their safeties. With Mike Adams out, rookie T.J. Green got the start at safety, but Darius Butler was the one who played alongside him. We had seen Butler play safety during training camp and the team gave the indication that it was something they'd consider doing in games, and we saw that certainly pop up on Sunday. That left Clayton Geathers to play in the box as a linebacker more, something he's been doing more of recently while Adams and Green play safety. The Colts kept Geathers there even with Adams out, and you can tell just by looking at the snap counts: Edwin Jackson played just ten snaps, while Josh McNary and Antonio Morrison didn't play at all on the defensive side of the ball. Geathers, meanwhile, played 61 snaps, with Green playing all 69 snaps and Butler playing 67.
- It's also no surprise that the defensive backs played a lot on Sunday, given the Packers' tendency to pass much more than they run. Of the top seven players in terms of snap counts for the Colts, all but one of them were defensive backs (with the exception of D'Qwell Jackson, their main inside linebacker).
(Note: Only those playing more than 50% of the special teams snaps appear here, so this is not the entire list):