No one expected much out of Vick Ballard today in the Indianapolis Colts’ road game with division rival Houston Texans. The Texans rank second in the entire NFL against the run and have a great front seven that’s tough to get through. Many said stay away from Ballard even though both of his backups were out due to the Texans’s stout defense.
With all that being said, what Ballard did today was nothing short of phenomenal. He kept the Colts in the game by himself as the Colts’ offensive line struggled to keep quarterback Andrew Luck off his back all day. Ballard’s running ability kept the Texans in check as he broke out many long runs in the second half.
Ballard finished with a career high 105 yards on only 18 attempts. The Texans only allow 90 yards per game on the ground so a rookie getting over 100 on them is fantastic. It’s also showing maybe the Colts have their running back of the future as Ballard has been among the best in the NFL the last month.
He had 94 yards last week at home against the Tennessee Titans on only 19 carries. That’s 37 carries with 199 yards in two weeks. This could be the blessing that if the Colts can figure out how to keep Luck standing up right and not scrambling for his life could lead them to a deep playoff run.
If teams want to advance through the postseason it’s not how good the quarterback play is rather than finding a balance of a solid air attack but a great ground game.