The Indianapolis Colts attempted to push their record to 2-0 earlier this afternoon, but the Miami Dolphins were too much to handle. The Colts lost the game 20-24, but the big takeaway from the game wasn’t the final result; it was what happened on the field in Indianapolis.
Andrew Luck, who has been touted as the second coming of the quarterback god in Indianapolis, didn’t exactly lose the game for the Colts, but he didn’t win it for them either. It was a game that revealed just how different the Andrew Luck era will be when compared to the Peyton Manning era.
During the Peyton Manning era, the Colts became experts of playing with a lead. The offense would quickly jump out to an early lead, and the defense would then be able to tee off on the opposing team. It was a system that was sometimes ugly, but the Colts won games using it.
Indianapolis seems to be employing a similar strategy with Andrew Luck, or at least that’s what they’re trying to do. The difference is, Andrew Luck isn’t the quarterback that Manning was while in Indianapolis, at least not yet. Against the Dolphins, Luck’s performance was marred by poor decisions that often slowed or halted drives.
Although Andrew Luck was able to throw for well over 300 yards, too much of the burden of victory has been placed on his shoulders. The Colts have little running game to speak of outside of Luck’s scrambling abilities, and defenses know they have to focus only on the Colts’ passing attack.
The Colts didn’t lose because Andrew Luck didn’t pull them through in the clutch. The Colts were beaten by the Dolphins because the Dolphins were able to hold the Colts off as a team. The Colts, on the other hand, didn’t give their young signal caller enough support to win, and that’s a big problem for Indianapolis.
The Colts scraped by the Oakland Raiders last week, but they have too many missing pieces at this point. Andrew Luck has to make too many plays to keep his team in games, and that’s not a winning formula in this league. Andrew Luck is a franchise quarterback, but he’s nowhere near the level of Peyton Manning. Manning could pull the Colts to victory, almost by himself. That’s not something Luck can do on a consistent basis just yet, and that point was on full display against the Dolphins.