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One Game Season
Colts must dispatch the Titans to advance in the playoffs
written by Stephen Conway

Intensity has been the watchword since the Colts fell to Buffalo 31-6 in the last game of the season. As painful as the loss to Buffalo was to watch, it is unlikely we will see a lack of fire this Sunday when the Colts face the Tennessee Titans in their first home playoff game since moving to Indianapolis. Coming off a tremendous 13-3 season, the Colts have their sights set on the NFL's greatest prize. This is done one down, one quarter, one game at a time, however, and the Titans are the first challenger they must overcome.

This is no small task. The Titans come into Sunday's game riding a euphoric last-second victory over Buffalo on a gadget kickoff return play for a touchdown. Their defense, led by Rookie Defensive Player of the Year Jevon Kearse, will look to continue its domination through pressuring the quarterback, and their offense will look to Eddie George to carry the load against a suspect Colt run defense.

There are no secrets to success. Hard work and grace under pressure yield results. The Colts have used this formula throughout the season to earn victories in every must-win game. We now know the level at which the Colts are capable of performing. They have met or exceeded our expectations (and perhaps their own) at each turn. The bar has just been raised again. Its up to them to play with the passion and discipline they have demonstrated before.

While the play on the field will ultimately dictate the final score, the crowd will have an important impact on the Titans' ability to implement their offensive strategy. The city of Indianapolis has whipped itself into a frenzy in anticipation of the game in the dome this Sunday. After many long years of loyal support, Colt fans have a team capable of competing for championships. After enduring countless losing seasons, look for the crowd to take out its pent up frustrations on the Titans' offense. Players have spoken in weeks past about the floor of the dome actually resonating with the roar of the crowd. How Tennesse and, more specifically, Steve McNair and the offensive line deal with this hostile environment will have a major impact on the outcome of the game.


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

Game Prediction
The key to victory is how much the Colts can disrupt the Titans' running attack. Limit RB Eddie George's gains on the ground, and the advantage swings in favor of the Colts. The Titans' aggressive style of defense relies heavily on pressuring the quarterback. If the offensive line continues its spectacular play and Peyton Manning is able to read potential blitzes, don't be surprised if the Colts are able to score on several big plays. The Titans will leave the dome deaf and done for the season.


Score: Colts 24  Titans 14

Next Opponent
AFC Divisional Playoff Game:
Tennessee Titans
01/16/2000

when: 4:05 EST
where: RCA Dome
TV: CBS

Game Prediction

Matchups:
Offense
Defense
Special Teams


Archive:
Issue #1
Issue #2
Issue #3

Issue #4

1999 Schedule

9/12 BUFFALO W31-14
9/19 at NE L 31-28
9/26 at SD W27-19
10/03 BYE
10/10 MIAMI L 34-31
10/17 at NYJ W16-13
10/24 CINCY W31-10
10/31 DALLAS W34-24
11/07 K.C. W25-17
11/14 at NYG W27-19
11/21 at PHI W44-17
11/28 NYJ W 13-6
12/05 at MIAMI W37-34
12/12 N.E. W20-15
12/19 WASH W24-21
12/26 at CLE W29-28
01/02 at Buff L 31-6

 

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Updated:
04/19/06

1999