Posted on October 17, 2017, by Travis Pulver
Heading into Monday Night Football, the Indianapolis Colts and Tennessee Titans were both hoping to see something from their teams. The Titans wanted to see if they could win without a mobile Marcus Mariota (because they sure aren’t going to win much with Matt Cassel). The Colts, on the other hand, just wanted to play a complete game.
In the end, the Titans walked away happy and the Colts—well, the Colts once again looked promising but couldn’t finish the game.
For Indianapolis fans, the game was reminiscent of their last Monday Night Football game against the Seattle Seahawks (October 2). In that one, the offense and defense both played well in the first half and they were up 15-10.
That was the case on this night as well. Jacoby Brissett led the team on three first-half scoring drives. The defense held the Titans to field goals on their three first-half scoring drives, and at the break, the Colts were up 13-9.
While the offense was forced to punt on its first possession of the second half, the defense returned an interception for a touchdown to extend the lead to 19-9. Yes, Adam Vinatieri actually missed an extra point.
Maybe this time things could work out for the Colts. Maybe they could improve to 3-3. It may sound crazy, but perhaps they can compete in the AFC South this year.
The defense continued to do its part and held the Titans to two more field goals, one coming after a Jack Doyle fumble gave them a short field. But much like the second half of the Seahawks game, the offense failed to do its part.
Brissett didn’t guide the Colts offense to a first down until almost midway through the fourth quarter. At this point, the Titans had taken a 22-19 lead, and Mariota had the Tennessee offense clicking. On that drive, Vinatieri tied the game up with a 52-yard field goal. But on the next drive, Mariota connected with Taywan Tayor for a 53-yard touchdown to retake the lead.
Indianapolis looked like they might tie the game up again on their next drive. But on fourth and one, Brissett rolled out and ended up trying to dive for the first down while going out of bounds.
He didn’t make it.
Derrick Henry tacked on a 72-yard touchdown run five plays later to make the final score look much more lopsided than the game actually was, 36-22, Titans.
Tennessee often relies on Mariota’s ability to run on offense, and he certainly could not do it against the Colts. If the Titans are going to make a serious run within the division or earn a wildcard spot, they will need him healthy and running.
For the Colts, it was another disappointing loss. Without Andrew Luck, there aren’t really any expectations for Indianapolis. However, they seem to be capable of playing well. They just can’t make halftime adjustments.
The win snapped the Titans’ 11-game losing streak to the Colts.
Indianapolis will have a tough one on deck next week when they face the Jacksonville Jaguars. Tennessee will try to keep the good times rolling against the Cleveland Browns.