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Jekyll and Hyde Continues
The Colts still searching for answers to their road game inconsistency
written by Stephen Conway

It is difficult to understand, much less explain how the Indianapolis Colts can play so well AND so poorly in the same game. Clearly, the Colts have many talented players (most on offense) and should enter any game confident of their ability to compete at a very high level. On paper, as the pundits put it, the Colts are serious playoff contenders. In reality, however, the team has fallen well short of this description.

The defense certainly must shoulder a good deal of the blame, allowing mediocre teams to rack up pro-bowl numbers seemingly at will. But there's plenty of blame to go around. Since the collapse in the Oakland game, the team as a whole has lacked consistency from half to half. 

Is it a matter of focus? According to all accounts from the coaching staff, the team is preparing with the same intensity from week to week. Even the casual fan, though, can note the difference between the Colt team that has played on the road at Chicago and Green Bay and the Colt team that came out swinging at home against the Jets and Jaguars. What's that old adage? Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice shame on me.  Clearly, the coaches need to adapt their methods when preparing from upcoming games. I'm not suggesting wholesale changes, but the player have not learned from past mistakes and they MUST if the team is to venture into the post season.

Is it a matter of heart? I'd like to say no. But in the most recent road games, the Bears and Packers have played with greater desire. When the game is in the balance, the Colts seem to lack a sense of urgency on the road. Once they fall a suitable number of points behind, the team wakes from its slumber and comes roaring back. I think the Colts want to win, but they need an in-game attitude adjustment. Again, this is a juncture where the coach has a great deal of responsibility. Jim Mora has a duty to call individuals out and demand more from his team as a whole when they are obviously playing below their potential. And this does not have to mean a screaming fit on the sideline. Different players and teams require different methods of motivation. With a mounting pile of losses as evidence, it is clear that Mora must continue to look for new methods to demand the best from his players. 

We are discovering that the Colts rise to glory last year truly was something remarkable. It is very very difficult to stack win upon win in the NFL week after week. This season and this year's schedule have brought the team down to Earth. They have to tools to excel, but they cannot afford to rest on their laurels for a minute, a quarter, or a half. 

Matchups
Breakdowns of the key matchups on offense, defense, and special teams.

Game Prediction
The game against Miami this week at the Dome will give the team a chance to solidify their position in both the division and the playoff hunt. Put simply, the Colts are still masters of their own destiny. The question is: which team will show up? If the home (read: Jekyll) Colt team shows up, the Colts will play well and take care of business, earning a tie for the AFC East. If the road (read: Hyde) Colts team makes an appearance at the Hoosier Dome, it will be a long afternoon. I expect Jekyll but would not be surprised to see Hyde. Let's hope Mora finds a way to lock up Mr. Hyde and throw away the key! 

Score: (Jekyll)  Colts 24  Dolphins 20

    (Hyde)  Colts 17   Dolphins 24

 

Next Opponent
Miami Dolphins
11/26/2000

when: 4:15
where: RCA Dome
TV: CBS

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7 - 4

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Archive:

1999 Season
Issue #1
Issue #2
Issue #3

Issue #4
Issue #5

2000 Schedule
Issue #6

Issue #7
Issue #8
Issue #9
Issue #10
Issue #11

Issue #12
Issue #13
Issue #14
Issue #15
Issue #16

9/03 at KC

W  27-14

9/10 OAK

L   31-38

9/17 BYE  
9/25 JAX

W  43-14

10/1 at Buff W  18-16
10/8 at NE L   16-24
10/15 at SEA W  37-24
10/22 NE W  30-23
10/29 DET W  30-18
11/05 at CHI L   24-27
11/12 NYJ W  23-15
11/19 at GB L   24-26
11/26 MIAMI
12/03 at NYJ
12/11 BUFF
12/17 at MIAMI
12/24 MINN
 

 

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Updated:
04/19/06

1999, 2000