Colts: 3 things Indy must focus on fixing during bye week
1. Establishing the Run Early
It pains us to admit it, but Indianapolis has lost its identity as a run-first offense over the last several weeks. While fans will be quick to blame the impossibly slow starts by the defense, the offensive line has been night and day blocking the run compared to pass protection.
How bad has it been? Rookie running back Jonathan Taylor has been held under 70 yards in every game but one so far. Since Week 2’s drubbing of Minnesota, when the 2020 second-round pick totaled 101 yards and a touchdown on 26 carries, we can’t remember a game this season where the Colts managed to establish the run early and didn’t abandon it.
It’s worth noting that Taylor’s yards per attempt, which were a BIG concern early on, have made considerable strides over the last four weeks. However, he’s only averaging 13.5 carries per game during that span. For a team that was literally built to beat teams by pounding the rock, that simply cannot happen.
It’s on the coaching staff to figure out a way to get Taylor cooking early and often when the Colts return from their bye. As we mentioned earlier, the schedule stiffens up in the second half of the campaign, and Rivers simply won’t be capable of saving their bacon if they continue to dig themselves large deficits in the first halves of games. Establishing the run early is a surefire way to prevent that from happening.