After five weeks of the 2013 NFL season, the Indianapolis Colts are looking like a team that wants to contend with the likes of Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos. Doing it like nobody thought they would, the Colts have absolutely dominated their opponents on the ground. But, will that continue?
The Colts have now lost two very important pieces to their rushing attack in Vick Ballard — earlier this season — and now most recently Ahmad Bradshaw. Both backs will be out for the remainder of the year, leaving the pressure on newly-acquired Trent Richardson.
Richardson won’t be alone, though. His backup is now Donald Brown, who honestly has been a serviceable back in this league. He won’t ‘wow’ you with any incredible moves or 50-plus yard runs on most occasions, but he can advance the ball on the majority of his carries.
The biggest surprise this season, in my opinion, has been the run game from the quarterback position. Andrew Luck has done a phenomenal job with his legs when he needs to use them, rushing for 135 yards on 20 carries this year. He’ll have to be more actively-involved if they are going to continue to uphold their currently 4th-ranked rushing attack.
At the moment, Bradshaw leads the team in rushing with 186 yards on 41 carries, to go along with two touchdowns. Richardson is at 151 yards on 50 carries. Surprisingly enough, Brown is the second-leading rusher with 157 yards on just 19 carries — that does include a 50-yard burst.
Remember, though, I said not to count on those too often.
The Colts still have enough to uphold their lethal rushing attack. That is assuming Richardson can get it going, though. Currently averaging 3.0 yards per carry, Richardson has to raise that number a bit to keep defenses honest — and I believe he will.
Indianapolis has sure looked elite this season, especially on the ground. Will they be able to keep it up? I certainly think they have a good shot to do that.