Things are finally looking up; both in the Colts win column and on my prediction scoreboard. Despite Pagano’s (pictured) predictable “coaching-to-not-lose” philosophy instead of coaching to win with a comfortable lead in the second half, the Colts did just enough to earn their first victory of the season 31-28 over the Browns. On to the scoreboard:
I felt the Colts defensive would win in the trenches and predicted that they would hold the Brown under 75 rushing yards for the game. After allowing only 2.5 yards per rush in the first 2 games, the Colts yielded 111 yards on 21 attempts (5.3 avg.). In a fairly limited defense for my prediction, I did indicate that they had to contain QB DeShone Kizer and his team-leading 44 yards rushing doomed my prediction.
Luck (unfortunately I’m not referring to Andrew) is a key component during NFL games and also in the validity of my predictions. I stated that Colts rookie S Malik Hooker would pull down another interception which he did on the last play of the game. He played another great game for the Colts and looks to be a star if he stays healthy and focused.
I indicated that Colts RB Frank Gore would total over 100 yards from scrimmage (rushing and receiving)and would score a touchdown. This seems to be a no-brainer by halftime, but his rushing totals headed the wrong direction in the second half as the offense seemed to go into a four-corners offense mode (wrong sport but apt analogy) with Gore plunging into a stacked line play after play. Gore finished the game with 57 yards rushing and 0 yards receiving ensuring I got zero love for the first half of this pick. The good news for me is that he punched one in from four yards out in the second quarter allowing me to claim I was half-correct on this one. If we had any semblance of creative coaching and aggressive play-calling in the second half I believe Gore would have had a much bigger game.
I called for the Colts to win a stress-free game 27-10 over the Browns. I was feeling very guru-like with the halftime score sitting at 28-14 and, like the Colts, I finally breathed a sigh of relief when Hooker sealed the victory with a pick for the Colts first victory of the season.
In summary, I was correct on 2.5 out of my 4 predictions (it is my scoring system so I can claim a half-point if needed) leaving my season total 4.5-12 (38%). Yes, the results are fairly weak so far, but note that I earned more points this week than in my first two games combined! Or as I like to call it, I am 4.5 out of 8 predictions when Brissett starts and 0-4 when Tolzien is under center. Since I rank my weekly results according to the careers of past Colts quarterbacks, week three was a Matt Hasselbeck (pictured below). He won 5 out of his 8 career starts for the Colts throwing for 11 touchdowns and 2,121 yards.
Neither a Savant nor a Simpleton does this week make me.