Indianapolis Colts Fans Need to Stop Overreacting

Eric SmithCorrespondent IIISeptember 14, 2011

HOUSTON - SEPTEMBER 11:  Wide receiver Reggie Wayne #87 of the Indianapolis Colts gets both feet down in the back of end-zone for a touchdown in the fourth quarter against the Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium during a season opener on September 11, 2011 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
Bob Levey/Getty Images

For all you Colts fans that say "suck for Luck" in anticipation of getting Andrew Luck next year can just jump off the bandwagon now.  You're just a fan of winning and not of the team. 

What fan cheers for a team to lose just to grab a college kid that I admit is good, but we don't know what he can do in our offense?  That's just insane.  You're the typical bandwagon fan that listens to everyone else because it's the cool thing to do rather than actually watch the game. It's not as bad as it seems, Colts fans.

It was literally one game.  Just one game.

This was the exact same game as it was last year against the Texans.  Houston ran the ball with little resistance and threw all over us.

This biggest difference between last year's game and this year's? 

The game on Sunday is a lot more correctable than last year's and the Colts ended up 10-6 and AFC South Champs that season.

If you take away two ill-timed fumbles deep in their territory and a punt return where the Colts players look more like matadors than football players, it's a 13-7 ballgame.

The run defense can be fixed if they put the time in the film room and the practice field.  Pat Angerer ran into blocks all day.  The cornerbacks played way too far off the line of scrimmage.  The defensive linemen weren't getting off of blocks—they were running around them.

Nothing against Houston, but it was more mistakes on the Colts' part than talent of the Texans.  It was all about heart and will and Houston had more Sunday.

The Colts' defense did have two interceptions and a fumble recovery.  Don't forget about that.

The other key stat is the Texans were shut out in the second half.  Don't give me the "they just tried to run out the clock" argument either.  If they were trying to run out the clock they could have at least gotten some field goals.  They had 19 first downs in the first half, for crying out loud. 

I've watched way too much football to know if the run game is working early it would work even when you're trying to kill the clock.  The Colts just found an adjustment that worked.

The offense has plenty of schemes they can fix and I feel these will be fixed this week as well.

First off, Kerry Collins wasn't taking enough of a drop back when he started under center.  He was only taking three-step drops and standing there with the football open-handed.  With Houston bringing the amount of pressure they were bringing there's no way he would have time to get rid of the football.

If you notice in the second half, Collins and the coaching staff adjusted and had Collins take five- to seven-step drops or started him in the shotgun.

The offense looked much smoother and it gave the receivers more time to get open downfield and exploit an weak Texans secondary.

Now with the protection schemes seen and giving Collins a bit more time, all the QB will need to work on is more accuracy, which for a guy that's now 10th all-time in career passing yards, I don't think will be a problem.

A key stat from Sunday between the quarterback play is that Collins actually had a better quarterback rating than Matt Schaub. 

The other thing the offense can always fix is the run game.

It was a little better on Sunday with backs Joseph Addai and Delone Carter averaging more than four yards a carry.  If the Colts can average four yards a carry and Collins gets better protection, watch out.

The third thing that will be fixed with a week of practice and film is the play-calling.

Lets face it, Kerry Collins is no Peyton Manning.  He doesn't know our offense the way Peyton did to change the plays multiple times at the line.  Collins only had six practices going into the Houston game to learn the offense with players on the field.  He had to go with the play called and run with it even if it looked like it wouldn't work.

I have heard that Collins is like Manning as far as studying the playbook and the game.  If that's true, then take Sunday as a preseason type of offense where everything is dumbed-down and just trying to get by and look for more improvement as early as this Sunday.

I have full faith in the coaching staff to notice these things and get them corrected.  If I can see it, I know they can.

I have full faith the turnaround will start this Sunday against the Cleveland Browns, who lost to the miserably bad Cincinnati Bengals in Week 1.  All the Browns have is Peyton Hillis.  Expect the Colts to stack the box and fly at him and force Colt McCoy to beat them. 

The bonus is the corners don't have any true threat to line up against when they do force McCoy to throw.  The Browns have below-average receivers.  This will be a huge turnaround.

The Browns defense only has Joe Haden.  With the weapons that Collins has at his disposal the Colts will find the end zone a lot more.

The next game after the Browns is the Pittsburgh Steelers, who got beat worse than the Colts did in Week 1.  The Steelers committed seven turnovers against the Ravens.  This game could be tough, but if the true crowd shows up they can make a big difference to pull out a victory.

The next game after the Steelers is a Monday Night matchup against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.  The Bucs lost at home to the Detroit Lions on Sunday.  I don't think the Bucs match up well with the Colts and think that's a very winnable game.  If the Colts prevail they're 3-1 coming off of Sunday Night and Monday Night Football wins.

After those big wins it's a terrible Kansas City team coming to Lucas Oil and then traveling to a bad Cincinnati team that the Colts got their lone preseason win against.  Both of those are very predictable wins and now the Colts are 5-1 heading into a Sunday Night matchup against New Orleans.

Most people will call me crazy, but just watch.  I fully anticipate a 5-1 start to the season.  The worst case would be 4-2. 

If that all happens all this negative talk will be forgotten.  So calm down.