Week two of the preseason is now in the books. Once again, Coach Frank Reich’s play-calling was very limited, since there is no need to show his opponents what the team can do right now. So, until the regular season begins and specific plays have a much bigger impact, instead of analyzing specific plays, I will analyze decisions made by Frank during the game.
- Giving Jacoby Brissett a real chance to show what he can do.
Against the Bills, the Colts “starting” offense looked completely out of sync, without any creativity or explosiveness, and could not execute a single play correctly. This week, that changed a little bit. After going 3 and out on the first two drives, backup quarterback Jacoby Brissett orchestrated a 10 play, 85 yard drive that ended in an Eric Ebron touchdown.
It was evident that Reich was allowing Brissett and the offense to take more risks, and that he called more aggressive plays instead of just running it up the gut. Brissett finished the game 8/10, with 100 yards and a score, and it is safe to say he put to rest the idea that Chad Kelly was better than him. Frank made the right call giving Brissett more freedom to show what he can do, as he has to gain confidence and rhythm in case Luck is not ready for Week 1.
- Going for it on 4th down in the final drive of the game
Overtime in the preseason is as useless as a Trent Richardson run on 3rd and long, so Reich made the right call to go for it on 4th and short in the redzone instead of choosing to kick the field goal that would send the game into overtime. Despite failing to convert the 4th down attempt, turning the ball over and losing the game, the call allowed the coaches to try players out in a hypothetical high stakes situation.
- Not blitzing
This might seem a little bit weird, but the decision by coaches Reich and Eberflus to not blitz on passing downs makes a ton of sense. Last season, the Colts defense excelled at generating pressure with stunts and delayed blitzes. Unconventional blitzes were a big part of Eberflus’ scheme last season, so it is wise not to show your opponents what those look like just yet.
This was a preseason game, so there are no bad decisions to make. A bad decision in the preseason would be leaving a starter in the game longer than he should, or not allowing your roster bubble players to showcase what they can do. Reich gave the depth players plenty of opportunities to showcase their abilities this week. For this game, we can safely say Reich did not make any serious mistakes.