NFL Analysis: Preseason Week 3 Colts vs Eagles
As both squads move forward, they have their eyes set on the upcoming matches, with the Colts preparing to face the Jacksonville Jaguars at home, and the Eagles gearing up to challenge the New England Patriots. Make sure to check BUSR NFL Lines before the season starts.
Indianapolis’ new quarterback, Anthony Richardson, made quite an impression in this game. This rookie player from Florida, who stood as the No. 4 overall pick, exhibited immense potential on the field. Although he has significant room for growth, he played a pivotal role in the Colts’ triumph over the Eagles. With a record of completing 6 of 17 passes, which accounted for 78 yards, and rushing five times for 38 yards, Richardson showcased his capabilities during the first half.
The Colts’ new coaching acquisition, Shane Steichen, has a notable history of transforming Philadelphia’s Jalen Hurts from a doubted second-round pick into an elite NFL quarterback in his tenure as the Eagles’ offensive coordinator. Steichen’s expertise will now be channeled towards mentoring Richardson, striving for a similar trajectory of success in Indianapolis.
Richardson’s potential was evident during the Colts’ fourth drive, wherein he made an outstanding 17-yard pass to Kylen Granson amidst challenging traffic.
On the other side of the field, Philadelphia decided to sideline their starters, including Hurts. Marcus Mariota, the backup quarterback for the Eagles, managed to complete 1 of 2 passes spanning 21 yards. Philadelphia’s acquisition of Mariota was anticipated to bolster their backup quarterback position. Despite his initial struggle during the preseason game against Cleveland, Mariota made a promising 21-yard completion to Deon Cain. This eventually led to Trey Sermon’s 1-yard touchdown run. Nevertheless, Mariota wrapped up his preseason with 17 completions out of 30 attempts, 164 yards, one interception, and being sacked four times.
Rookie Tanner McKee, projected to be Philadelphia’s third-choice quarterback, completed 19 of 34 passes, accumulating a total of 158 yards. It’s pertinent to note that many of the Eagles players on the field that night might not make it to the finalized 53-man roster.
On the special teams front, Eagles’ kicker Jake Elliott proved his mettle by successfully converting field goals from 59 and 52 yards during the first half.
Ups and Downs
Bernhard Raimann, who had a fantastic rookie year, continued his outstanding form this preseason. Specifically, against the Eagles, he stood resilient, preventing any pressure during his 33 pass-blocking snaps.
The Colts’ linebacker unit, spearheaded by Shaquille Leonard and Zaire Franklin, is among the top-tier groups in the NFL. Franklin, in particular, shone during the game, registering two tackles without any loss in just 12 run-defense snaps. Furthermore, this sixth-year linebacker from Syracuse also contributed by forcing an incompletion.
Indianapolis was without their stellar running back, Jonathan Taylor, amidst ongoing discussions regarding a contract extension. Despite his absence, Taylor traveled with the team to Philadelphia. After a challenging previous season marked by injuries and subsequent ankle surgery, Taylor, the 2021 rushing champion, is expected to earn $4.3 million in the upcoming season. He is currently seeking either an extension with the Colts or a potential trade.
Anthony Richardson’s return was marked with varying levels of success. While his passing statistics against the defending NFC champions were not stellar, his ability to lead the Colts in rushing yardage stood out.
The Colts witnessed some concerning moments as offensive lineman Danny Pinter was escorted off the field due to a left ankle injury during the onset of the second half. Moreover, linebacker Shaquille Leonard, diagnosed with a concussion, was not present during the Philadelphia trip.
In summation, as the preseason culminates, teams are fine-tuning their strategies, rosters, and player dynamics. For the Indianapolis Colts, the preseason provided valuable insights, preparing them for the challenges of the regular NFL season and how it will impact their NFL Odds.