Indianapolis Colts: 3 stars who saved Indy from 0-4 start vs Miami
By Adam Weinrib
Entering Sunday’s action, the Indianapolis Colts had led for 6:10 of game action. Six minutes in three weeks. An impossibly low plateau for a team with playoff aspirations.
On the brink of — let’s be blunt — outright elimination from playoff contention in Week 4, the team rallied on Sunday in the hot Miami sun. The defense snuffed out a Jacoby Brissett revenge game before it ever really began (though the mobile QB did make a few head-scratching plays to keep the hope of a rally alive), the offense turned enough drives into seven points to satisfy us, and Frank Reich adjusted mid-stream to emphasize the run game, which definitely worked.
Needless to say, there was plenty more to like about this outcome than any of the previous three — and, for those Colts fans who love to watch the scoreboard, there was some joy elsewhere, too. Specifically in New Jersey.
So, which Colts get to wear the crown for this one? Who’s most responsible for securing the much-needed victory? We’re going to give a lot of the kudos to star power.
Apologies to Ashton Dulin, who very nearly made this list despite being one of the last people you expected to see here today. He evened up the ‘Phins and Colts in the “Muffed Punts” column on the scoreboard all by himself. Tip of the cap here, and a fourth-place finish on this prestigious list.
As for the top three stars, all of these men deserve kudos for piloting Indy out of the depths.
3 Indianapolis Colts stars who powered Frank Reich to victory vs the Dolphins
3. Jonathan Taylor
Without emphasizing Jonathan Taylor — questionable earlier in the week with what ended up being some fluid buildup in the knee — the Colts likely don’t secure this victory.
It was Taylor who carried the rock en route to the first seven points of the game. Just when it seemed like we were about to hit halftime with a 3-0 deficit, asking questions about where this team’s motivation sat and how it was possible they were unable to create their own momentum in the most winnable game of the season to date, there was Taylor, rumbling into the end zone for 23 yards, single-handedly changing the calculus.
All in all, after a strange week where Taylor posted 64 yards on 10 carries, eye-popping numbers on a tiny number of totes, he ended up with 16 carries for 103 yards and a touchdown on Sunday, averaging the exact same 6.4 yards per carry. Poetic.
Taylor’s 38-yard scamper was his longest of the day, but that 23-yarder for the score set the tone for a second-half salting away of a much-needed victory, and forced Reich to reverse course and pound it through Miami’s defense. Whatever change occurred in that moment, it helped secure the win.