Originally posted on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 11/18/12
  The Indianapolis Colts and rookie quarterback Andrew Luck were no match for Tom Brady and the Patriots after getting pounded 59-24. The game certainly didn’t start out looking like a Patriots blowout. The Colts took their first two possessions and drove down the field for touchdowns on each drive. The Patriots responded in kind to the first Indy score, and at the end of the first quarter, the Colts had a 14-7 edge. Then the wheels came off. They gave up a Julian Edelman punt return for a touchdown, and then Luck promptly threw a pick six to newly acquired Patriots cornerback Aqib Talib. Bang, bang. Patriots lead 21-14. Then the Pats offense became, well, the Pats offense, and Luck added two more interceptions, with another returned for a touchdown. The Patriots dominated through the air all night (Brady went 24-35 for 331 yards and three scores), especially with tight end Rob Gronkowski, whom the Colts had absolutely no one to cover him with. Gronk caught seven balls for 137 yards and two touchdowns, making it look easy against the Colts corners. Wide receiver Wes Welker also chipped in for 7 catches and 80 yards. At this point, it is obvious that the corner position needs to be the number one priority in the offseason. As far as the Colts go, Luck actually threw for three more yards than did Brady (334) and added two scores of his own, but he was hurt by poor protection, dropped passes, and the three picks. They did have success on the ground, totaling 119 yards and a touchdown. Vick Ballard carried the majority of the load with 72 yards on 16 carries (4.5 average). It could have been better, but the Colts fell behind to much too quickly and had to try and play catch-up. Against the Patriots, that just doesn’t work. This game is the latest example of the Colts and their rookie quarterback’s road woes. At Lucas Oil Stadium, the Colts are 4-1, with the only loss coming on a last minute 80-yard pass againstJacksonvillein week 3. Away from the friendly confines, however, it has been vastly different, going 2-3. A lot of the home success can be attributed to Andrew Luck’s stellar play at the Luke. However, every coin as two sides, and a lot of the struggles on the road can be placed at Luck’s feet as well. Let’s look at the numbers. At home, Luck is completed 56.9% of his passes (119 of 209 attempts), for 1,518 yards, with eight touchdowns and only 2 interceptions. That’s good for a quarterback rating of 88.9. Luck has also run the bal1 18 times for 112 yards (6.2 average) and 3 touchdowns. That is contrasted starkly with his away game performance. On the road, Luck has hit on 116 out of 203 attempts (which is actually slightly better at 57.1%) for 1,147 yards, but only four touchdowns versus ten interceptions. That makes a quarterback rating of 67.4. Running the ball, luck has run once fewer (17 attempts) but has only half the yards and 2 two touchdowns. So why the vast difference in performances? A lot of it has to do with the teams they’ve played. InIndianapolisso far, you haveMinnesota,Jacksonville,Cleveland, andMiami. All those teams are currently a combined 11-28 (.282 win percentage). The only “good” team they’ve faced at home wasGreen Bay(now 7-3), and let’s not forget that the Colts trailed in that game 21-3 at one point. On the road, they have played some of the better teams and/or defenses in the entire league:Chicago(7-2 pending Monday night’s game), New England (now 7-3), and the New York Jets (4-6, but they have the NFL’s 6th ranked pass defense), in addition toTennessee(4-6) andJacksonville(1-9). Unsurprisingly, those are the only two road games the Colts have won. What it really breaks down to is that Andrew Luck is beating the teams he really should be beating, and is getting beat by teams that are better right now than his team is. There’s no reason for Colts fans to enter into any kind of panic. The playoff hope is alive and well.Indianapolisnow stands at 6-4, and has a manageable schedule the rest of the way. There are winnable games the next two weeks againstBuffaloand atDetroit. Let’s say they split those, getting the record to 7-5. Then you have divisional opponentsTennesseeand a road game against likely AFC South champsHouston. If the Colts can get another split, that makes it 8-6. Then you have bottom feederKansas City, and a home game against a Texans team that will in all likelihood be resting its starters for a playoff run. Win both of those, and the Colts sit solidly at 10-6. But for that to happen, Luck is going to have to step his game up more, and he has the physical and mental capabilities to do so. It’s not an easy road to the playoffs, but it is still in sight. Follow me on Twitter @expertfan1
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Greg Jennings: Ryan Tannehill has had his hands tied by coaches

Josh McDaniels 'happy' with Pats but wants to be a head coach again

WATCH: Jim Harbaugh in cleats throws out first pitch at Cubs game

Why Rickie Fowler will win the PGA Championship

Warren Sapp bitten on arm by shark

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Fitzpatrick, Jets agree to one-year deal

Baker considering removing Papelbon from closer role?

Greg Hardy struggling to find work, reportedly even in CFL

Jets players told not to discuss Ryan Fitzpatrick situation

Brock Lesnar won't be punished by WWE for UFC drug test

Report: Cowboys to be fined up to $250K for suspended players

Report: Ravens WR Mike Wallace failed conditioning test

WATCH: Kobe Bryant drives Ferrari around Italian racetrack

Terrelle Pryor shouts out Ohio State after ban ends

Justin Timberlake advocates for Memphis to join Big 12

Poll: Las Vegas residents don’t support public funds for NFL stadium

Conor McGregor talks trash to Nate Diaz on ‘Conan’

We asked Team USA: What other Olympic sport would you play?

Real Madrid can’t train at Norwegian school because of the kids

Newspaper uses Michael Jordan ‘crying face’ as image

Equipment manager Blake Griffin punched no longer works for Clippers

Report: Nicks signing one-year deal with Saints

Reds 'picking up the pace' on Jay Bruce trade talks

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

We asked Team USA: What other Olympic sport would you play?

Why Gary Bettman's CTE denial is cause for concern for NHL

WATCH: Inside the Nike SNKRS BOX in SF for Golden Air Celebration

WATCH: Five other uniforms Chris Sale should cut up

QUIZ: Name every Olympic event in which the USA has never won a gold medal

Five U.S. Olympians favored to win multiple gold medals

WATCH: What teams should join the Big 12?

One Gotta Go: Do NBA players really love NBA2K?

One Gotta Go: NBA players hate Facebook too

One Gotta Go: NBA players settle the fast food beef

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker