As December falls upon us and teams begin to make plans for either the off-season or post-season, the Indianapolis Colts find themselves atop their division but with plenty of concerns. The trend of starting slow has been a troublesome one that has been with this team since Reggie Wayne went down in October. So what do the Colts need to do fix some of their woes? The answer isn’t so simple. For one, the Colts need to get back to running the ball, and sticking with it. While majority of the media and fans have been against the notion of the Colts being a run-heavy offense, I have been in favor of it. I believe that it takes pressure off Andrew Luck and helps his receivers get better separation off of play-action plays. And with how the Colts offensive line has played this season, Luck needs help any way he can get it at this point. Especially considering that the Titans were able to sack Luck 5 times and pressure him even more. Teams that win the Super Bowl have been able to run the ball in the post-season successfully, even if they haven’t been able to do so in the regular season.
So running the ball is one key. The second is benching and starting certain players in place of the others. The Colts made some moves this past week against the Titans in benching Trent Richardson for Donald Brown, which is what the Colts HAD to do at this point. For the record, I have been one of the biggest proponents in having patience with Trent Richardson but even I have seen enough to see it was time for a change. The Colts have not given up on Richardson and they hope that a full off-season will help him be the player that they spent a 1st rounder on.
Other players got benched but outside of Cassius Vaughn stepping up with a pair of interceptions, the difference was negligible. What needs to happen in terms of players being benched is having Darrius-Heyward Bey dropped in place of undrafted rookie DaRick’ Rogers. Rogers has all the measurables to be a top-flight receiver but didn’t get drafted due to off the field issues that appear for the moment, to be behind him. He can’t be any worse than DHB has been to this point. Samson Satelle also needs to be benched. Lastly, Pep Hamilton needs to step up his play calling and not try to get too cute. Calling a reverse on a 1st down in Tennessee territory is definitely an aggressive call but is certainly not a timely one. I wouldn’t mind seeing that type of call early in the game but at that point in the game where you must capitalize off of a turnover, you go to plays that work for you. The point has come in the season where the Colts must get things back on track if they are to avoid an early playoff exit.