Here’s how Colts beat Texans in Week 2 and what Indy must do to win again in Week 18

The Indianapolis Colts and Houston Texans face off in their regular-season finales on Saturday night, and both teams will be playing for a playoff spot.
Indianapolis Colts v Houston Texans
Indianapolis Colts v Houston Texans / Perry Knotts/GettyImages
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The Coaching Battle

In Week 2: Both coaches were still learning to be head coaches

Both head coaches, Colts’ Shane Steichen and Texans’ DeMeco Ryans, were both coaching their second game of their careers as head coaches. In fact, both lost their respective season openers and Steichen got his first career head coaching win against DeMeco Ryans and The Texans. Both coaching staffs have really settled into their roles now.

For Week 18: Shane Steichen has faired well against DeMeco Ryans and that needs to continue

Both coaches will now have an opportunity to make the playoffs in their first season as head coaches. Both teams sit at 9-7 and can win the division with a win, if Jacksonville loses to Tennessee in its finale (unlikely). Both coaches have completely turned around their respective franchises and have the belief of their locker room.

While Steichen won the first matchup this season, we also saw the two coaches matchup against each other last season as assistants in last season’s NFC Championship. Steichen was the offensive coordinator for the Philadelphia Eagles and DeMeco Ryans was the defensive coordinator for the San Francisco 49ers. Philadelphia completely dominated the match up and won by a final score of 31-7.

Steichen did this by defeating the defense on the ground with a 44-to-25 Pass-to-Run ratio. Hence the importance of Taylor and Moss this week for Indianapolis. Now it was more of a game script as they were up early after the elbow injury to Brock Purdy and the carousel of quarterbacks after that. Look for Steichen to lean on the experience he has had against Ryans in the two recent games against him.

As mentioned prior, the Texans are battling a slew of injuries on both sides of the ball, so the preparation from both coaching staffs and gameplan execution could end up being the biggest key to this football game.