Falcons at Colts
Where: Lucas Oil Stadium
When: Sunday, 1:00 Eastern Time
Line: Falcons +2
The Falcons head to Indianapolis for their second road game of the season. The first one, as we all know, didn’t go so well, as they were trounced by the Vikings 28-12 in Week 1. However, Atlanta was able to bounce back in their home opener with a thrilling victory in the final minutes over the Eagles. They can thank a raucous crowd for that, and that is what they will be up against this weekend against the Colts, who return home for the first time after two road games to start the season.
Coming into the year, many believed the Colts had what it took to take the next step and win the AFC. They had an offensive line that could bully opponents, and up-and-coming defense led by Darius Leanord, and of course, Andrew Luck. But then Luck threw the organization the ultimate curveball by retiring weeks before the start of the season, leaving Jacoby Brissett as their starting quarterback.
If there was a glass half full way of looking at it; Brissett at least has substantial starting experience – both with the Colts and Patriots. He’s as prepared for this moment as any backup quarterback and has performed pretty well thus far, tossing five TDs compared to one interception in the first two games. However, the engine that makes this Indianapolis offense hum is their rushing attack. Their offensive line remains a handful, and Marlon Mack is third in the NFL in rushing.
Injuries could play a factor in this one. The Falcons will be missing Chris Lindstrom, who was placed on IR last week. However, Jamon Brown performed admirably in his place against the Eagles. The Colts lost two playmakers on defense last week: Pierre Desir is expected to miss time with a bone bruise in his knee, and Darius Leanord is currently in concussion protocol and is questionable for Sunday.
Three Keys to the Game
Falcons defensive front vs. the Colts offensive line
Dan Quinn against AFC teams
T.Y Hilton vs. Desmond Trufant
I picked the Falcons Week 1, and they lost. I go against them in Week 2, and they win. Guess that means I have to pick against them here, right? In all seriousness, I do believe this is going to be a very tough game for the Falcons to win. Forget about Andrew Luck retiring, this is an excellent Colts football team, and they are going to be fired up for their home opener following a crucial divisional win over the Titans. Jacoby Brissett isn’t anything special, but he’s more than enough to get the job done considering the pieces he has around him. This is a game the Falcons could win, but given Dan Quinn’s noted blemishes against AFC opponents, I give a slight edge to the Colts at home.
Colts 24, Falcons 20