If you were in the camp of not knowing whether Jacoby Brissett could actually put an ‘elite’ game on tape (including myself), then what you saw earlier today was your answer.
Additionally, the question of when Frank Reich would put a more aggressive, down-field attack in Brissett’s hands was put to rest as well. In the first half alone, Brissett put together passing plays of 17, 18, 26, 30, and several others over 10 yards.
Brissett connected on his first 16 attempts and put himself in great company as the last time that had happened was in 2008 by Peyton Manning. His first half tally was 21-of-27 for 218 yards and 2 touchdowns which is the best Brissett has looked to this point in his short career, and most certainly during his time in Indy.
Colts QB Jacoby Brissett has already reached a new single-game season high in passing yards in the first half. Threw for 190 in Week 1 and has 218 at the end of the first half today. Also had two touchdown passes.— Jake Arthur (@JakeArthurNFL) September 22, 2019
Brissett was precise, quick with his release, and was an escape artist (very Andrew Luck-ish in his way to deliver the ball when getting hit) in the pocket in the first half to say the least. Considering the Colts only had 39 rushing yards through the first two quarters, Brissett and this offensive line got a workout and answered the call about as well as any Colts’ fan could have hoped.
Brissett completed his only attempt in the third quarter as the Falcons owned 13:17 of the quarter, and in the first moments of fourth quarter Matt Ryan hit Austin Hooper on a 2-yard touchdown pass that cut the Colts’ lead to 20-17.
Brissett’s first possession of the fourth quarter started out somewhat shaky which may have caused some concern. He was hit with a delay of game penalty on first down, and threw a bullet to Marlon Mack from about five feet away that took a lucky Colts’ bounce away from other Falcons’ defenders.
Brissett then settled in a bit, and with the aid of a couple more Falcons’ costly penalties, the Colts were in business yet again.
Brissett hit Mo Alie-Cox for 16 yards and a first down. Brissett then scrambled up the middle for 6 yards and a first down on third down, but then he looked to be losing some accuracy. He threw consecutive passes in the dirt, but a defensive holding call kept the Colts’ possession moving forward.
Brissett hit Alie-Cox for another 9 yards, and then found Zach Pascal for a huge gain of 35 yards with some nice YAC which put the Colts at the Falcons’ 4 yard line. Mack closed out the drive with a touchdown run to the pylon putting the Colts up 27-17.
The Colts’ final drive didn’t consist of many attempts for Brissett, but he went 7-of-10 in the second half altogether, and was no less clutch in his efforts.
The Colts were able to get what they needed on the ground, and what Brissett wasn’t able to achieve in terms of stats in the second half, he did show that he is nails when the Colts need him to be — especially on the most important drives of the game.
Brissett drove the Colts down on their final possession of the day in their 27-24 victory by draining the final four-plus minutes of the game clock, converting on his only third down attempt of the possession (to Jack Doyle), and executed the entire drive perfectly.
Jacoby Brissett became just the 3rd QB in #Colts franchise history with a 115+ passer rating in 2 of the first 3 weeks of a season.— NFL Research (@NFLResearch) September 22, 2019
Others: Peyton Manning (2009, 2004) and Johnny Unitas (1964).
Brissett had only logged three 300-yard passing games in his previous 25 games played, and a total of three games with a quarterback rating of 115 or higher. Today, Brissett finished with a 118.1 quarterback rating (career 4th best), put up his second-best career number in passing yards (310 yards), and his 5th best average yards per attempt at a clip of 8.4 YPA — all in games with more than 20 attempts.
Brissett also had a completion rate of 75.67 percent, good for his second best career rate only behind his Week 1 efforts against the Los Angeles Chargers (77.78%).
Additionally, Brissett had only amassed five career 2-touchdown games as well (one 3-touchdown game) before this one, but it’s fair to say despite not throwing for more than two scores, it still qualifies as Brissett’s best all-around game as a pro.
It appears the Colts might be okay with this new quarterback after all. Who knew?