I’m not sure if words can describe how great that win was last night. The Colts completely dominated and outclassed the New York Jets on Monday Night Football.
It was a level of domination that we have rarely seen from the Colts in recent years. More importantly, it was a key win in a must win situation, something the Colts haven’t been great at in recent seasons.
And yes, I know it was the Jets, and the Jets are bad. But how many times have we seen the Colts drop the ball, or play to their opponents level, in a game like this?
MVP - Andrew Luck
I’m not sure if any of us really knew what to expect from Luck coming off of a concussion. He had played well in the two games leading into Thanksgiving, but was sidelined due to the injury. Well, those questions were answered. Luck finished the game 22-28 for 278 yards and four touchdowns through the air. He also added 26 yards on the ground with a few key carries.
More importantly, Luck made no costly mistakes, and played every bit the MVP level that Colts fans know he can. Sure, that sideline throw to Donte Moncrief was ill-advised (probably should’ve been a pick six actually) but it worked out. I’d prefer Luck not throw that pass though. But regardless, Luck played a flawless game against, quite frankly, one of the better defenses the Colts will face down the stretch.
Coby Who? Award - Dwayne Allen
All year Allen had been very quiet from the tight end spot, again battling occasional injuries. Last night, he was not quiet. Allen caught four passes for 72 yards and three touchdowns. A lot of times Allen (rightfully so) gets a lot of flack for dropping passes, but he quieted that crowd, at least for a while, with his third touchdown catch of the game.
If the Colts can get Allen involved in the offense more, suddenly the unit becomes even more dangerous.
December Football Award - Colts Rushing
Yes, I’m using the Pagano terminology of playing good “December football.” But really, the way the Colts ran the ball last night is exactly what they need to do. Gore averaged nearly four yards a carry, and pounded the Jets near the end of the half.
In total, the Colts ran for over 100 yards. Overall the running game did exactly what it needed to. It was just dangerous enough to make the Jets have to defend it. Run to open up the pass. While they can’t become run-first, the Colts will need to continue having at least the threat of a running game.
Feed The Receivers Award - T.Y. Hilton and Donte Moncrief
Guys, these two are really, really good. Hilton had been somewhat limited in practice, but it didn’t show against the Jets. Hilton abused any Jet defender attempting to guard him (mainly Darrelle Revis) and hit the defense for big plays time and time again. Hilton finished with 9 catches for 146 yards, as he basically moved the Colts up and down the field between the 20s. The other thing that stopped Hilton was himself and his third down drop late in the game.
Moncrief, on the other had, continues to be a monster in the red zone. The receiver has scored in all but one game he has played (the Denver game) and is becoming the Colts go to player once they get near the end zone. Moncrief again came up with a few key plays other than his touchdown. He caught that ill-advised pass from Luck with a beautiful toe-tap, and burned, and then escaped, from Revis to pick up a first down.
Meme-able Award - The Game in General
So many great screen shots and gifs from the Colts win. My personal favorite was the Jets fan holding a Bud Light. But there were a few excellent (well...not if you’re a Jets fan) pictures and moments grabbed by the ESPN crew. And let’s not forget the dudes who ran on the field.
And then there was another epic Pat McAfee celebration. This game was great for the Internet.
LVP - Houston Texans
Wait, what? Yes, the Texans were the biggest loser from this game. And yes, I partly picked this because I couldn’t find anything too negative to say about the game itself (minus those injuries to a few Colts players).
But the Texans, after controlling the division all year, have now slipped into a three-way tie with the surging Colts and surprisingly consistent Titans. The Texans had plenty of opportunities to put away the Colts and Titans in the South, but couldn’t. Now they have to head to Indianapolis to play a Colts team seemingly peaking at the right time, and they have to head to Tennessee in the final week of the season. Not good.