Colts 456 net yards against #1 defense
The Colts were far more productive on offense than the Browns, and this Browns’ defense was on a historic streak, and fresh off entirely shutting down the red-hot Niners’ offense. They did this without starting quarterback Anthony Richardson, with a banged up Alec Pierce, no Braden Smith, and also without tight end Kylen Granson. Given all that context, the Colts still manage to put up over 450 net yards of offense and 38 points on such a great defense. Credit for this go to everyone involved, despite being beaten by Myles Garrett sometimes during the game (which will happen when you are facing off against the best defensive player in the NFL right now), they still performed admirably and did enough to win.
Browns get 17 points off turnovers, Colts turn the ball over four times
There were two big reasons the Colts ended up losing the game on Sunday, one was beyond their control, and the other was something they absolutely have to better at: limiting turnovers. It is fun that the narrative earlier this season was that Richardson was supposed to be careless and turn the ball over a lot and Minshew was supposed to be the guy that took care of the ball, when it has been the exact opposite. Now I don’t like counting that lost fumble with just three seconds left because that is a situational turnover (similar to when a quarterback just heaves it 50+ yards because there is no time left on the clock and a defender picks it off), but still the argument remains, turnovers killed the Colts. More than turnovers, it was edge rusher Myles Garrett who was the biggest reason the Browns escaped with the win. Massive respect to that beast of a human being, who put up perhaps the most dominant defensive performance I have ever seen in my time watching the NFL. Still, four turnovers is not an acceptable number, and Minshew has to do a better job of taking care of the ball.
Kenny Moore gets 1.5 sacks
Gus Bradley could smell blood, and he pounced on it, dialing up creative blitzes that had former scout team quarterback P.J. Walker off balance all game long. As a result, Kenny finished the game with 1.5 sacks and finally got back up to speed on the pass-rushing department.
Josh Downs over 100 receiving yards, scores for second consecutive week
What a receiver the Colts have found right? Downs continues to impress and this time showed his big play ability to go with those safe hands on third downs. The rookie is the perfect complement for Gardner Minshew, and looks set to be the Colts’ slot wide receiver for at least the next four seasons.