After the Indianapolis Colts gave the San Francisco 49ers a royal beat down on Sunday, there was a specific play being overanalyzed. The particular play came later in the game when quarterback Andrew Luck kept the ball and ran it in to give his Colts a 20-7 lead over the defending NFC champions.
The most interesting aspect of this play is what head coach Chuck Pagano said after the game in regards to the score. He told reporters he had no idea Luck was going to keep the ball, giving us all the notion that Luck called an audible that Pagano did not see coming. In fact, not even Luck’s left tackle Anthony Castonzo saw it coming.
“All I heard was ‘sucker,’” Pagano said as he laughed speaking to the media. “Long play call and then I heard ‘sucker’ at the end of it.”
“As soon as I saw him in the end zone and (spiking) the ball, it felt awesome.”
Luck sure showed his veteran leadership in only his second season. In a game against a team that made the Super Bowl a year ago, Luck stepped up in a huge way to lead his team to a crucial victory. Pagano said after the game that this was a “signature win.”
When looking at the film, I’m sure that Pagano and his crew are going to have a tough time finding things to improve upon outside of the single drive they gave up 77 yards rushing. Pagano admitted as much.
“There’s a lot of good things, obviously, on that (video),” he said. “You can look to a lot of different things: Running the ball, stopping the run. We gave up 115 yards rushing, but 77 of it came on one drive. Once we got that thing calmed down, the defense was outstanding.”
A year after his rookie season, Luck is already showing the poise and leadership of a tenured veteran. If Sunday’s victory is any indication of what this team is capable of in the future, the Colts are in for at least a good decade of excellence to come.