The Indianapolis Colts had their first preseason game today against the San Francisco 49ers. They started off hot scoring the first ten points of the game with Peyton Manning driving them down the field against a tough 49ers defense. Manning finished eight of ten for 91 yards in the two possessions he played in. When the starting offense came out, it went down hill after that.
Curtis Painter continued his struggles from the end of last season throwing three interceptions. NFL Network analyst Jamie Dukes summed it up best about the Colts backup quarterback situation by saying that should've addressed the issue with a veteran quarterback. I completely agree with him that we needed a proven veteran quarterback like Mark Brunnell who was singed by the New York Jets a few weeks ago. Now, let's get to what I saw at Lucas Oil Stadium today.
Tom Brandstater looked impressive in Colts debut: Tom Brandstater came in after Curtis Painter and did very well. He didn't look nervous at all and looked calm in the pocket unlike Painter. He finished eight of twelve for 34 yards and added one touchdown with one pick. I wouldn't be surprised if Brandstater comes in after Peyton Manning against Buffalo next week.
Starting defense looks sharp against great run team: The starting defense even with Bob Sanders and Dwight Freeney being out shut down the 49ers offense until they came out. San Francisco didn't have Frank Gore play and Glen Coffee's sudden retirement made them scramble to find a starter for the game against Indianapolis. Michael Robinson and rookie Anthony Dixon split time and didn't do great against the starters, but then they tore up the field running for about 150 yards against the reserves.
Pat Angerer looks like a Brian Urlacher clone: In his first NFL game, linebacker Pat Angerer made a great first impression. He relieved Gary Brackett and finished with eight tackles and two sacks. I see a lot of Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher in his game. Don't be surprised if they let Brackett walk when his contract expires and give the reins to Pat Angerer.
Young running backs Devin Moore and Javarris James average four and six yards a carry: Finally, we have two running backs that can run the ball to the hole instead of being afraid of getting hit. Even though it's only the first game, I love how both Moore and James run the ball. Both took pressure off of Curtis Painter and Tom Brandstater during the game with an aggressive running styles by both of them. Indianapolis should keep these two young running backs, this could be a great one-two punch down the road.
Jamie Silva out for season with torn ACL: Special teams star Jamie Silva is now out for the season with his torn ACL. Silva was doing great in the game before this injury. This could go downhill for Silva after rehab this season. The Colts might let Silva go when his contract expires after next season. Bill Polian will now have to bring in a safety to backup Antoine Bethea.
Austin Collie beats Anthony Gonzalez in third receiver battle for week one: Austin Collie and Anthony Gonzalez will battle for the third receiver spot this preseason. Gonzalez missed most of the season last year with a torn ACL. Austin Collie took advantage of the opportunity to start for Indianapolis. This position battle will be fun to watch this preseason for the Colts.
Brandon James and Sam Giguere are in a tight battle for kick returner: Brandon James and Sam Giguere looked good against the 49ers. James had four returns averaging 25 yards a return. Giguere on the other hand had two kick returns averaging 24 yards a carry. Brandon James comes out number one in week one of this battle.
This is your Colts Weekly Dish the preseason edition. Come back later this week to read the second part of my preseason edition of the Colts Weekly Dish when they travel to Toronto to face the Buffalo Bills.