Sunday was a weird day.
I started off watching the Detroit Lions play the Atlanta Falcons (in London) at 9:30 in the morning. And before long, I was convinced it was Thanksgiving. Then, I watched the 1:00 games waiting for the Colts to come on (sadly, with no turkey or pumpkin pie). When the Colts finally took the field against the Pittsburgh Steelers at 4:25, they looked nothing like the team I expected to see, or the team I wrote about last week.
Bottom line: Worst Thanksgiving ever. The good news: It wasn’t Thanksgiving anyway. And that’s kind of how I look at Sunday’s game.
The Colts weren’t as good as they were made out to be last week. But, they’re also not as bad as they’ll be made out to be this week. This isn’t who they are. But it also isn’t who they aren’t.
I know. I’m confusing myself too. But it was a confusing day.
At risk of sounding like Dennis Green, the Colts are who I thought they were, which is…not quite there yet. A loss like this was going to come. Is it stunning that they shut out the Cincinnati Bengals week seven, then allowed 51 points by the Steelers week eight? Maybe. But sometimes getting knocked on your butt at the right time is exactly what your team needs. Hopefully, you don’t get knocked on your butt in the end zone like Andrew Luck did (a play which Indy Star columnist Gregg Doyel brilliantly nicknamed the “butt safety”).
But (no pun intended)…that’s the thing about the NFL. Your team is only as good as it is on that day. Sunday, October 19th, the Colts were brilliant. Just like the week before. They were magical. Like unicorns, I said. On Sunday, October 26th, they were more like livestock. Nothing magical about livestock.
The Steelers are still a tough, physical team, and they played like it. They had been embarrassed and disrespected, including by former Ravens linebacker and current ESPN analyst Ray Lewis, who called them out, saying teams no longer had to wear chin straps when they play them. Uh, Big Ray…I beg to differ. If Andrew Luck hadn’t had his chin strap on Sunday, he would have been the Headless Horseman on Monday. I’d rather watch 100 scary Halloween movies (in a row) than watch Steelers linebacker James Harrison coming after Luck on every down.
As Colts fans, we have much to be thankful for. Most of all, let’s be grateful that was a regular season game. And that the Colts can learn from it, put it behind them, and move on to the Giants this week.
And that we can all still look forward to Thanksgiving…
When I will have football on my TV and turkey on my table.