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FanPulse Week 12: Colts’ fans regain confidence; How much will the loss to Texans dump the optimism?; Which QB will be the best in 5 years?

Welcome to SB Nation FanPulse, a survey of fans across the NFL powered by SurveyMonkey. As the season kicks off in just a few weeks, each week, we’ll send 32 polls to 100+ plugged in fans from each team. Colts fans, sign up HERE to join FanPulse.

This week is a little different to that of the previous FanPulse surveys that have been conducted. While we’re staying with the question of confidence in the direction of the Indianapolis Colts, we’ve also seen completely different games in the time of this survey being conducted, and the results being tallied.

First, let’s jump in to how the fan base reacted to the bounce-back 33-13 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Once again the Colts’ defense did their part in keeping the Jaguars’ offense in check with Nick Foles under center, but the team’s offense was extremely run heavy in Jacoby Brissett’s return to the lineup. Jonathan Williams and Marlon Mack combined to run for over 200 yards and the Colts simply dominated in that respect.

Brissett’s arm wasn’t needed much at all, and the Colts ran away with what was a much-needed divisional victory. Thus, the fan base reacted accordingly and the confidence level bounced back along with the team.

From their lowest number of the year (39 percent), the fan base found themselves enamored with the running game mixed with a largely dominant defensive performance, and that confidence number shot up to 80 percent as a result.

Since that shellacking of the Jaguars, the Colts traveled to the Houston Texans in an even more important matchup that could very well decide the fate of the AFC South.

Once again, the Colts’ running game was heavily employed, but in this one Brissett’s arm was needed to take the lead in another one-score affair. Mack was out, but Williams filled in wonderfully with all things considered, and the defense put another very good performance on the field.

However, Brissett, Frank Reich, and the team’s receiving corps simply did not show up in the biggest game of the season which held the highest of post-season implications. Brissett passed for a measly 129 yards, and looked indecisive to say the least when he was asked to deliver the ball past 10 yards downfield.

Whether or not the numbers reveal a similar drop in confidence that we saw after the Colts’ Week 10 loss to the Miami Dolphins, they absolutely should. The Colts had their opportunities, but they weren’t collectively capable of pushing the offense to the level required when the lights were their brightest.

Don’t expect the Colts’ fan base to take such a performance lightly when the numbers come out in reaction to the loss at the hands of the Texans next week.

Now, we had the ability to weigh in on a much more enjoyable topic, that is seething with hyperbole and projection.

The question of which quarterback would be the best in five years down the road was asked and aside for Tom Brady somehow being added to this list, the results were quite interesting to say the least.

Perhaps the NFL is in great shape with some of the names on this list. The youth at the position is beginning to show more and more each and every week. With quarterbacks such as Jimmy Garoppolo, Dak Prescott, Deshaun Watson, Lamar Jackson, and Patrick Mahomes growing every Sunday it’s certainly a difficult position to argue against.

Granted, there are a handful of others who deserve to be on this list, such as Russell Wilson and maybe even Aaron Rodgers — both of whom I would still expect to be tearing up the league — but this group of youngsters could very well be in the driver seat five years down the road.

Though Jackson is showing MVP talent and performances this season, and Watson and Prescott have shown that they can take over games as well at the flip of a switch, Mahomes has take the crown for this question this week. Mahomes garnered an insane percentage of the votes, and did it running away with more than 40 percent more votes than Jackson who took second place in the survey.

After Jackson, the cushion between Watson (3rd), and Garoppolo (4th) was very minimal, but the fact remains that Mahomes is ultimately seen as the golden boy for the league moving forward. I choose to see it differently, though. I simply take solace in knowing that the league has a new group of stars at the position, and can only hope that more over the course of the next few years will add more names to that list.