Name a team hotter than the Indianapolis Colts right now. If you can find one let me know because this Colts team is on fire entering the 2013 postseason.
The Colts enter on a three-game win streak after beating the Jacksonville Jaguars 30-10 at home in Lucas Oil Stadium. With the Cincinnati Bengals winning also, that means the Colts will play at home again next week in the first round of the playoffs.
If you look at the last several Super Bowl champs, they all got hot towards the end of the year. They all also played in the first round of the playoffs.
Indianapolis has won four of the last five games and have finally figured something out. Its defense is stingy and the offense is finally scoring early.
Prior to three games ago, Indianapolis hadn’t scored a first half touchdown since Oct, 20. Since, it has scored a total of 53 points in the first half and five touchdowns in the process.
Mix that with a defense playing lights out, only allowing its opponents to score 20 total points in three weeks, and you’ve got yourself a very scary team entering the playoffs.
Indianapolis has shown to be very good when playing with the lead. The defense has 11 sacks, five interceptions and three fumble recoveries the past three games. That’s eight turnovers in that span.
Compare that to their offense now that they’re protecting Andrew Luck, have a run game going and aren’t turning the ball over, and this is a recipe for a banner season.
In the last four games, Indianapolis has turned the ball over a total of one time and only allowed three total sacks on Luck. The only turnover came on an interception against the Houston Texans two weeks ago and he’s been sacked once each of the past three contests.
As far as the ground game, Indianapolis has 104, 63, 152, 135 and 80 yards respectively the last five weeks, with four total touchdowns. That’s a very potent attack as they’re finally keeping teams guessing.
Then with the young receivers like Griff Whalen, LaVon Brazill, Da’Rick Rogers and tight end Coby Fleener really stepping up, this team and offense is dangerous. Whalen has 157 yards and two touchdowns on 15 catches the past three games. That’s allowed T.Y. Hilton to get going as he’s had 25 catches for 200+ yards over that same time frame.
Mix in Brazill’s 106 yards and two touchdowns, Rogers’ 292 yards and two touchdowns and Fleener’s 89 yards on 10 catches over the past month, and this team is tough to stop.
With an offense having all the confidence in the world getting out to early leads, a defense that’s not allowing anything forcing tons of turnovers and getting a bunch of sacks over the same time frame, you have yourself a true Super Bowl contender.
Eric Smith is the Colts Beat Writer for Rant Sports. He’s covered the team the past four seasons and is recognized as a member of the media by the Colts. Follow him on Twitter @ericsportsguru