**Sorry haven't posted in a few days, I have been very busy**
Baltimore Ravens 24 vs Indianapolis Colts 9
FG J.Tucker 23 yd. Field Goal (10-66, 3:56)
FG A.Vinatieri 47 yd. Field Goal (10-51, 5:44)
TD V.Leach 2 yd. run (J.Tucker kick) (6-63, 1:35)
FG A.Vinatieri 52 yd. Field Goal (7-46, 0:50)
TD D.Pitta 20 yd. pass from J.Flacco (J.Tucker kick) (5-75, 1:23)
FG A.Vinatieri 26 yd. Field Goal (15-72, 7:46)
TD A.Boldin 18 yd. pass from J.Flacco (J.Tucker kick) (5-70, 2:30)
What the Colts did Right
The Colts put up a good fight in the first half, and the Colts received some very good performances from some offensive and defensive guys.
On offense, Andrew Luck had an admirable game. It wasn't great on paper, but that was because he had absolutely no help from his supporting cast. He stepped up in the pocket well, and he found his targets most of the time. Luck made some good runs, and scrambled pretty well. His pocket awareness was very good. He knew where the rushers were coming from and did his best to try and avoid them, and a lot of time, he was able to buy time and find a target.
Vick Ballard ran well too. He averaged just over 4 yards per carry, which against the Ravens' defense is pretty good. Ballard found the right holes, and he burst through them. He had a few big runs including a 24 yarder that helped spark the Colts on a drive that ended in the Ravens' zone (the Adam miss).
Reggie Wayne was the best receiver. He made some big first down catches, but he also had a good amount of YAC yards. TY Hilton made some good plays on the screen passes. He was able to get good yardage after the catch.
The offensive play calling was executed well. They did a lot of screen passes, and almost all of them got good yardage. They were able to get Vick Ballard to involved in the offense and he was able to have a good impact. They were a little too pass happy, but when you're down early, you have to start passing it.
On defense, the Colts played very well early on, stopping the pass and the run. They were able to stop them early and make them have a few long 3rd down tries.
Robert Mathis got a good amount of pressure on the QB, and even was able to get a sack. He was the best linebacker out of the 4.
Vontae Davis did a great job of shutting down Torrey Smith in the 1st half. He nearly had a pick 6, but he dropped it, and that could have been a game changer. Antoine Bethea made some touchdown saving tackles, but that's about from the safeties.
What the Colts did Wrong
The Colts were handily beaten, and there is definitely more wrong than right this past game. They received a lot of bad performances.
Although Luck had an admirable performance with a lot of good throws, but he did force a lot of throws, especially to Reggie Wayne. He forced throws to Reggie late in the game and it cost him an interception. He made some terrible throws, including that interception (as mentioned above) where he threw to Reggie when he was clearly covered.
The receivers had a bad game overall. Seven drops is unacceptable, and should never happen in a game. Four of those drops came on 3rd down, and that really killed the Colts. It limited their oppurtunities to score, and you cannot do that in playoff games.
The O-line, especially in regards to pass blocking, had a horrendous game as they allowed 3 sacks, 3 hits, and 5 hurries. That cannot happen, you cannot allow a defensive player to have this much of an impact. WInston Justice didn't start well, and then when Sowell went in, things just got worse. Castonzo struggled a bit, but
Then, on defense, the Colts were almost never able to get any pressure on Flacco, and did little in the running game. In the passing game, the Ravens were able to establish a vertical passing game, going 5/7, 157 yards and a touchdown when throwing 20 yards or more. If you're defense allows a lot of big plays, you will not win any games. The defense kept them in early, but they hurt them in the 2nd half.
Bernard Pierce was able to have a big game against the Colts. At one point in the game, Pierce was able to have big run after big run resulting in many first downs. Ray Rice didn't have as good of a day, but he was able to have impact runs. At the end of the day, the Ravens were able to rush for 170 yards on the ground and had an average of 6 yards per carry. That's what you call a bad run defense. When the running game gets going, and your offense is forced to sit on the sidelines and watch the other team kill the clock, that's when you start losing games. The run defense was a problem going into the game and it's still a problem after it.
The play from the linebackers was not good. Dwight Freeney was shut down for the most part by Bryant McKinnie. Jerrell Freeman missed several tackles up the gut, and that allowed a lot of first down runs. Pat Angerer was running around like a chicken with his head cut off, and was just dominated by Vonta Leach on several occasions. One of those occasions happened at the one yard line, where Leach stuffed it in, and the other came when Leach pancaked him on an outside run.
The play from the secondary was horrible and even hard to watch at one point. Cassius Vaughn was terrible. He started the game pretty well, but then the Ravens realized that Vontae Davis was shutting down their top guys, so they picked on Cassius. They picked on him especially on those deep passes. Those deep passes, especially the ones on third down killed the Colts. Darius Butler then came in and he was beat too. Boldin was just too good for these backups.
The play calling was very bad in the 2nd half. They didn't make many adjustments and the Ravens did. The question I ask is: Why put Cassius Vaughn one-on-one with Anquan Boldin after Boldin has been torching him for the whole game. At least bring some safety help over the top. On the majority of those deep passes, Vaughn was the lone guy near the receiver. He's not a star, he needs help in coverage. People like to blame Cassius Vaughn for the Colts' bad play in the secondary, but I blame the play calling just as much.
The game ball this week goes to Andrew Luck. It could have easily gone to Vontae Davis, but Davis didn't make any big impactful plays. Luck gave a valiant effort, with some big passes and some good runs. The receiving core had 7 drops, and had those passes been caught, his completion percentage would have gone up by 13%. He kept the Colts in the game for 3 quarters.