There's a well-known expression about the importance of history.
Those that ignore history are doomed to repeat it.
The bitter defeat to the San Diego Chargers in the playoffs last season boiled down to the Colts' inability to convert a third and short play because they couldn't run to get the first down.
Fast-forward to yesterday.
Facing another third and short, the Colts went to the run and came up short. Trying again, the Colts inexplicably decided to run wide on fourth down. Great penetration (or was it poor blocking?) allowed the Jags to stuff the play and get the ball back.
But a funny thing happened on the way to another Josh Scobee game-winning field goal (he's done it twice to the Colts, in Indianapolis no less).
The defense won the game.
Yes, on a day when a vast majority of the crowd inside Lucas Oil Stadium was excited starting the year with a healthy Peyton Manning and his vast arsenal of weapons, it was the defense that saved the day.
The Jags' last shot to drive down the field to win the game ended on four very unremarkable plays, punctuated by David Garrard throwing into the turf on fourth down after being pressured by the Colts.
It goes without saying the the game ball went to the defense today. The stat line may say the Colts only registered one sack, that going to Dwight Freeney, but Garrard was harassed throughout the day.
Garrard never had a chance to stay in the pocket long enough to stretch the Colts' defense. He ended up with a paltry 122 yards on 28 pass attempts.
The defense should also be commended for the play against Maurice Jones-Drew. The Colts killer didn't manage to get his usual 100 yards on Sunday. It's usually a foregone conclusion that Jones-Drew mauls the Colts' defense.
While Jones-Drew did have one spectacular 26-yard run in the first half, he was held mostly in check throughout the day. On a warm day where you'd expect the Colts defense to wear down, it was Jones-Drew that looked as if the weight of the Jags offense was too much as the game wore on. A majority of his yards came in the first half.
Make no mistake, this was an important win, but the Colts have a lot to work on. The Jags historically always play the Colts tough, but this is not a very good Jaguar team.
It's fairly clear that they will go as far as Jones-Drew can carry them...and if the unseasonable heat of Indianapolis slowed him down in the second half, how long will he hold up this season?
Still, the Colts are in the best position imaginable. Week One is done, and they have a game lead on the division.
Now that's a part of the usual Colts history worth repeating.
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