This is the mindset Colts head coach Frank Reich wants his players to be in. There is one chance left to continue a roller-coaster season with a trip to the playoffs.
The Colts rallied to defeat the New York Giants 28-27 on Sunday and the Saints beat the Steelers 31-28, bumping the Colts up to the sixth seed for a ‘win and you’re in’ scenario against the Tennessee Titans.
“We are keeping the same mantra – 1-0 (and) get better,” Reich said on Monday. “After the game we just said, ‘Hey, we’ve got one week guaranteed to us. That’s it. So let’s make the most of it every day, get better and get ready for this game coming up on Sunday.’”
Both the Colts’ and the Titans’ playoff hopes are on the line in this matchup and both teams have a record of 9-6. Whichever team wins advances to the postseason, and should Houston lose to Jacksonville, the winner of this game clinches the AFC South.
Andrew Luck is 10-0 against the Titans, but has made it clear that being undefeated against this team is the furthest thing from his mind.
“We talk about going 1-0 this week,” Luck said on Wednesday. “The cycle starts over. What happened previously and what happened in previous years – it doesn’t matter. What happened last weekend does not matter. It’s a new cycle.”
Two of the Colts biggest playmakers are on injury watch. Receiver TY Hilton has been officially ruled questionable for Sunday’s game with an ankle injury and likely will not practice this week. Tight end Eric Ebron left Sunday’s game with a concussion and a quad injury.
Hilton didn’t have much to say in Wednesday’s press conference, repeating that he ‘will be fine’ regardless of whether he gets to play or not. “I wish I was at 100%”, he said. “At the end of the day, as long as I am able to contribute to the team and give everything I got, I will be fine.” Throughout the last seven games, Hilton has completed 48 receptions for 856 yards and two touchdowns.
Ebron’s career-high 62 receptions for 690 yards and 12 touchdowns has been a huge part in the Colts’ offensive success. He will need to progress in the NFL’s concussion protocol before he is given clearance to play on Sunday.
The NFL has moved this matchup to primetime at Nissan Stadium on Sunday night at 8:20pm.