It’s that time of the week again where we step into enemy territory. We talked to Jeremy Nicholas of Naptown’s Finest, Fansided’s Indianapolis Colts site. We asked Jeremy about Jim Irsay and his comments about Peyton Manning, the addition of Trent Richardson, and the Colts’ poor run defense.
Let’s go Inside the Villain’s Venue with Naptown’s Finest.
Predominantly Orange: Jim Irsay took a dig at Manning saying that basically he’d take championships over personal stats, yet the Colts will honor Manning before Sunday’s game. Do you think Irsay slightly regrets his decision to let Manning walk away?
Naptown’s Finest: I believe Irsay’s comments were directed towards former GM Bill Polian, rather than Manning. If anything, I think Irsay is trying to direct the drama away from his team, and put it on himself. Only time will tell what becomes of this monumental transition, but Irsay’s Colts are a very fortunate franchise, regardless. Mentally, Andrew Luck is the closest thing to Peyton Manning in the NFL today, and I think Jim Irsay knew what had to be done.
PO: In the Colts’ two losses this season, the secondary struggled. Do you think this is an area that Manning will be able to take advantage of?
NF: The secondary is amazing when healthy, but they are not healthy right now. The Colts are playing very weak in the middle of the field, playing a lot of man-to-man defense, and they are not hiding they are doing. Manning struggles when defenses switch up their scheme, and can pick apart a team easily when he can see what they are offering. If the Colts want any chance to rattle the old man, then they must bring pressure early and often.
PO: The Colts run defense is poor, particularly in the middle of the field. Knowshon Moreno is coming off a three touchdown game. Is this a major concern for the team?
NF: Moreno is having a great season, and should be accounted for by the Colts. Still, the target will squarely be on 18. Peyton won’t hesitate to put up 50 points on his old team, if the Colts let him.
PO: With the addition of Trent Richardson, how has the Colts’ offense changed?
NF: Richardson hasn’t really blown up yet for the Colts, but he has shown flashes of greatness. The Colts want to be a smashmouth running team, and Richardson is a perfect fit for that. The jury is still out as to if this trade or scheme will work in the long run, but Sunday night will be a perfect time to unleash Richardson. If they can run the ball and keep Manning off of the field, then the Colts will control the clock. If the Colts go down early, then there might not be much chance to run at all.
PO: Finally, your prediction for Sunday’s game?
NF: Ah, it’s hard to not let my heart get mixed with my ego in this prediction. Many people around Indianapolis feel the same way about Manning as Denver fans feel about John Elway. I could see a ridiculous blowout on Sunday, in favor of the Broncos, but the Colts do have a few things going for them. With all of this Irsay/Manning/Polian/John Fox stuff going on, no one is talking about Andrew Luck, who has the chance to prove himself, against the greatest of all time.
Losing to the San Diego Chargers may have been beneficial for the Colts. After their first loss of the season to the Miami Dolphins, the Colts rebounded, and smacked around the San Francisco 49ers. Indy is yet to lose back-to-back games in the Chuck Pagano/Andrew Luck era. Still, unless Manning lets his heart get mixed up with his ego, I see Denver coming out on top. Broncos 37 Colts 25.