And this is where we find the problem.
Are the Colts a good team worthy of a playoff spot?
Or an opportunistic team that has gotten lucky against weaker competition?
There's two ways to look at a scratch-it-out win over a going-nowhere opponent, so let's dissect both views of the Indianapolis Colts.
The Colts Are a Playoff Team
These types of wins are all about one thing: grit. And all championship teams have it.
We already knew that the Colts could throw the ball well and have the talent to score points quickly. However, they haven't done it often, as the Colts only average 21 points per game.
Thus, T.Y. Hilton using that talent to produce big-time plays was a huge step forward for this team. He scored on a 75-yard punt return and also hauled in an eight-yard touchdown pass from fellow rookie Andrew Luck.
When things aren't working well, being able to manufacture points in multiple ways is a rather large advantage come playoff time. Or any time for that matter.
But this game was about a much-maligned rushing defense that has been eaten alive. That defense decided to make its own statement by limiting the damage caused by C.J. Spiller and keeping him out of the end zone.
Yards don't win games. Points do.
Finally, you have to be mentally tough to succeed in the postseason. Indianapolis has proven that it is.
The Colts Are Just in Sixth Place Right Now
That was pitiful.
We should get excited over a defense that "limited" Spiller to 107 yards on only 14 touches? That's a 7.6-yard average.
Just because the Colts held Spiller and Fred Jackson out of the end zone doesn't mean that the defense has improved enough to slow down an actual offense. Maybe if Chan Gailey didn't want to leave Buffalo, he would have tried to win by giving the ball to Spiller more.
Good teams beat bad teams, and they do it big.
Look at the New England Patriots. They are blowing teams out left and right. That's a playoff team.
Plus, have you seen the schedule? Indianapolis still has to play the Houston Texans twice. Good luck with that since they're only 10-1.
To your grit, I say feh!
Indianapolis isn't a blow-you-out type of team, and the only thing that actually matters is wins. I'll take grit and victories over style points everyday and twice on Sunday (sorry, had to).
This team is playoff bound.
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