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Colts’ Stock Up/Stock Down: Week 9

Tennessee Titans v Indianapolis Colts Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Stock Up

Michael Pittman Jr.

10 receptions for 86 yards and two scores in the biggest game of the season mean that MPJ is currently the Colts’ hottest player. He is clearly loved by Wentz, who likes him well enough to throw to him despite being triple covered and the checkdown being wide open, but he certainly deserves the high volume he has been getting. Pittman Jr. is becoming an elite all-around receiver, and has been the Colts' most clutch playmaker this season.

Braden Smith/Eric Fisher

What was once the weakest link in the offensive line is finally starting to play better. Braden Smith replaced the serviceable Matt Pryor on the right side of the line, doing a solid job against a productive edge rusher in Harold Landry, while Fisher more than held his own against Bud Dupree. It is particularly encouraging watching Fisher put behind his spotty game against San Francisco and continue his streak of improvements.

Bobby Okereke

Okereke was flying on Sunday, logging 12 combined tackles. After a rough start to his junior year, where he looked lost almost every other play, Okereke is slowly starting to come into his own and producing big-time plays. He only needs to step up a bit in coverage and his emergence as an above-average starting linebacker will be complete.

Kenny Moore II

Yet another defensive player for the Colts that is turning his season around, Kenny not only got the impressive interception on the Titans’ first drive of the game but is also the most productive secondary player in the run game. This defense desperately needed Kenny to start performing once again like the best slot cornerback in the NFL.

Stock Down

Carson Wentz

While he was not particularly bad throughout the game, there were 3 clear mistakes Wentz made that cost the Colts the game. The first was an overthrown pass to Ashton Dulin that puts the Colts in field goal range if completed, the second one is the pick 6 after not killing the play early (though the blame for that one is shared with Reich), and the third and worst of all is the interception in overtime. In the biggest game of the season, and the one that probably defines the division, Wentz laid an egg, and that is not something you want out of the expected franchise quarterback.

Nyheim Hines

At this point last season, Hines had 21% more yards and 3 more scores. His usage rate has been rather similar, as he only got 7 touches less this season, but it seems like Hines is struggling to recapture that sudden explosiveness that made him a dangerous weapon both in the run game and, most importantly, in the passing game.

Ashton Dulin

Over the past 3 games, Wentz is 3-9 for just 7 yards when targeting Dulin. With injuries to both T.Y Hilton and Parris Campbell, the Colts desperately need a receiver to step up and prove himself as a solid target, Dulin has not been capable of doing so, showing he is purely a special teams’ ace.

Frank Reich

While I still believe Frank Reich is a more than decent coach, he has not been showing it this year. While his play-calling has still been okay, saving some occasional inconsistencies, I am not so certain about the way he is using his personnel and the distribution of touches to the running backs. Those are only minor things though, my biggest concern is that the Colts do not seem to have that winning mentality, that edge where you just know they are playing to win. The moment I saw Reich was suffering from that too is when he kicked the PAT to tie it and go to overtime instead of going for two and the win in regulation.