The good and the bad from Colts streak-breaking win against Steelers

The Indianapolis Colts played their best game of the season against the Pittsburgh Steelers, ending a streak that has hung over the franchise’s head for years.
Pittsburgh Steelers v Indianapolis Colts
Pittsburgh Steelers v Indianapolis Colts / Andy Lyons/GettyImages
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The Indianapolis Colts looked like a playoff team on Saturday against the Pittsburgh Steelers, nearly playing a complete game as the defeated Pittsburgh 30-13— Indy’s first win against the Steelers since 2008. After going down 13-0 early in the game, Indy dominated, scoring 30 unanswered points. Not only did the Colts go down 13-0, but they lost leading receiver Michael Pittman Jr. to a dirty hit (that led to an ejection) and loss Zack Moss to an arm injury to on a touchdown run.

The Colts showed resiliency and poise this week but did make some mistakes as well. Let’s dive into this weeks analysis.

The bad from Colts Week 15 win over Steelers

Colts special teams

For the second week in a row, the Colts special teams struggled again. It looked like the unit really turned a positive corner against the Tennessee Titans when they blocked two punts consecutively that kept Indy in the game, leading to an eventual overtime victory, but that may not be the case. In Week 14, we saw a muffed punt that changed the trajectory of the game, and this week, we saw another mistake. A blocked punt that Pittsburgh recovered at the 1-yard line, eventually leading to a Diontae Johnson touchdown.

We also saw Matt Gay miss two field goals this week and he is now 3-of-6 in the past two weeks. This is hopefully cleaned up in the next few weeks if Indy does make it to the playoffs. We also saw a change at the returner position with Josh Downs now fielding returns. Isaiah McKenzie was a healthy scratch on Saturday. If you follow how this coaching staff has worked all season, this was a probably a punishment for the muffed punt last week. We saw similar instances of this with former Colt Deon Jackson and Darrell Baker Jr. this season.

More injures

While typically two injuries wouldn’t be a big problem for most teams after a win, these two injuries are cause for concern. We saw Michael Pittman Jr. take a vicious hit to the head (which contorted his spine) and led to the ejection of Steelers safety Damontae Kazee. Pittman Jr. was ruled out of the game with a concussion. It appears unlikely he will be available for next weeks game against the Atlanta Falcons as he has entered the NFL Concussion Protocol, and one-week turnarounds are very rare.

The other major injury was to Zack Moss. Where he was pulled down on a touchdown and broke his fall with his right arm. It was the same arm that Moss broke in the offseason, but it was called a shoulder injury and X-rays were negative, which is a good sign. With Jonathan Taylor and Moss dealing with injuries, the Colts may have to turn to reserves Trey Sermon and Tyler Goodson.