Tale Of The Tape: Indianapolis Colts At Denver Broncos

Indianapolis Colts
Denver Broncos
(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
(Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
(Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
Andrew Luck has had two solid seasons to start his career, and he should be coming into his own in his third year. Luck has excellent arm strength, a quick release, excellent field generalship and he is a plus athlete who can pick up key yards on the ground. While he may be in over his head against the Broncos on the road, Luck will not back down from any assignment.
Winner Peyton Manning is playing for one more chance to go back to the Super Bowl and pick up his second championship. While he has done everything a quarterback can do to accomplish his individual goals, Manning plays for the love of the game and the opportunity to win games. Manning’s ability to read defenses and throw the ball accurately give him an edge in nearly every game.
When Manning looks across the sidelines at his old team, he still sees wide receiver Reggie Wayne and he remains one of the most dependable receivers in the game. T.Y. Hilton has the ability to stretch the defense and can catch the long ball. The running game is a bit of a question mark, because Trent Richardson averaged less than 3.0 yards per carry last year.
Winner The Broncos set records with their offensive productivity last season and it seems quite unlikely that they will be able to come close to that kind of productivity again. However, they have perhaps the best offensive line in the NFL as well as the skill-position players to put on another memorable show. Montee Ball takes over at running back and Demaryius Thomas leads the way the WR position.
The Colts defense struggle to contain opponents last year and ranked 30th in yards allowed. If they are going to improve in this area, they are going to have to get a lot tougher. To that end, they signed former Raven Arthur Jones to help their run defense. He had 99 tackles and 8.5 sacks over the last two years. Inside linebacker Jerrell Freeman had 126 tackles last year, and he plays with a nasty edge.
Winner The Broncos are not as accomplished on the defensive side of the ball as they are on offense, but playing shutdown defense is not required when you set records on offense. Still, the Broncos can do better than 19th in yards allowed, and the addition of outside linebacker DeMarcus Ware should make the defense far more dangerous. Aqib Talib is one of the top cover corners in the game.
Special Teams
Winner Adam Vinatieri has reached the ripe old age of 41, but he made 35-of-40 FG attempts last year and there are few kickers that compare with him when the game is on the line. Pat McAfee averaged 46.0 yards per punt last year and placed 27 of his kicks inside the 20.
The Broncos are so explosive on offense that the loss of veteran placekicker Matt Prater for four weeks (suspension) is not likely to hurt them. However, if the Colts can keep this game close, unknown PK Brandon McManus may be in over his head. Britton Colquitt is a decent directional punter.

The Winner Is

(Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
Winner Denver Broncos
3 out of 4

Peyton Manning and the Broncos have the clear edge in this matchup.
-Steve Silverman, CBS Local Sports


  1. MINNEAPOLIS, MN - OCTOBER 9: Quarterback Brock Osweiler #17 of the Houston Texans drops back to pass during the first quarter of the game on October 9, 2016 at US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) SAN DIEGO, CA - OCTOBER 13:  Trevor Siemian #13 of the Denver Broncos warms up before the game against the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium on October 13, 2016 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
    Week 7 Tale Of The Tape: Houston Texans At Denver Broncos

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  2. SEATTLE, WA - OCTOBER 16:  Quarterback Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks passes against the Atlanta Falcons at CenturyLink Field on October 16, 2016 in Seattle, Washington.  (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images) GLENDALE, AZ - OCTOBER 17:  Quarterback Carson Palmer #3 of the Arizona Cardinals looks to make a pass against the New York Jets in the first half of the NFL game at University of Phoenix Stadium on October 17, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona.  (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
    Week 7 Tale Of The Tape: Seattle Seahawks At Arizona Cardinals

    The Seahawks face their NFC West foe on the road as the Cardinals look to get above .500 for the first time this season.

  3. FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 16:  Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots prepares to receive a snap during the game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Gillette Stadium on October 16, 2016 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images) PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 25:  Quarterback  Landry Jones #3 of the Pittsburgh Steelers throws a pass during warm ups before playing against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field on September 25, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
    Week 7 Tale Of The Tape: New England Patriots At Pittsburgh Steelers

    The Patriots are riding high and now face a Steelers team who will be without their starting QB.

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