The Indianapolis Colts’ November schedule is a nightmare for a 4-2 team with a lot of faults.
Entering their Week 7 bye, only a select few Colts fans were overjoyed with the team’s 4-2 start.
After all, we’ve been here before.
A frantic comeback against the bottom-of-the-league Bengals masked all the issues that led to the excessive deficit in the first place: Philip Rivers’ carelessness with the ball, a defensive backslide following Indy’s historic first few weeks, and an offense bereft of many of the weapons we anticipated having when the campaign kicked off (remember Marlon Mack?).
Though a 4-2 record puts the Colts among the league’s postseason contenders, the lack of confidence in these parts is still staggering. Luckily, the team has a few big returnees for Week 8, namely Darius Leonard and Michael Pittman Jr. But they’ll need every advantage they can get heading into a ruthless November slate that, much like with Jacoby Brissett under center in 2019, could send this partial team skidding.
Following the bye, Indy draws the Lions, a team that may or may not still have Matthew Stafford under center (those Dallas Cowboys rumors, while not deafening yet, are beginning tp buzz louder). That’s the easy part.
Following that pillow game, the Colts will be subjected to a gauntlet that features many of the NFL’s undisputed contenders. First, it’s the Ravens. While Baltimore’s rushing attack has taken a step back, Lamar Jackson’s electricity is unlike anything the Colts can produce. Then, just four days later on Thursday night, Indy meets the streaking Titans for the first time this season.
That gives this staff 10 days to prepare for Aaron Rodgers and the Packers, then encounter a repeat of the Titans battle to end the month, at home this time.
Clearly, the team’s not that nervous. After all, they had the stones to upload a three-minute video of a solitary goalpost on Twitter this week.
But that bye week silence belies the real truth: What we’ve seen from this 4-2 team is not good enough to defeat their batch of November opponents, a month that very well could plummet them to .500 or below.
Good news? Three of these five games are at home, and the Lions game is a road contest.
Bad news? If Indy stumbles in what suddenly seems like a must-win in Detroit, they may not be favored in any of the next four games. We’ll know this team’s fate by the end of the month.