Colts hold off Jaguars as Manning ties Unitas’ mark
Indianapolis spent all offseason trying to fix the defense. Mission accomplished – maybe.
On a day
“Obviously, the defense played well and came up big at the end,” Caldwell said. “We thought it would be a grind, and it was. I think our team certainly played tough, played hard, played with a lot of energy.”
Now the defense must prove it can continue playing this way.
Caldwell has instilled a tougher attitude and new defensive coordinator Larry Coyer has implemented a more aggressive scheme to take advantage of the
The bulkier defensive line also held up better against an old nemesis,
And it gave Manning win No. 118 as a Colt, tying John Unitas’ franchise record.
“I’ve never felt comfortable with comparisons with him. I think he’s kind of in his own category,” Manning said. “But I am proud of those wins.”
Manning, the three-time MVP, was 28 of 38 for 301 yards and one TD with an interception in the end zone that cost Indy one scoring chance.
Not exactly picture perfect.
“I asked (Rashean) Mathis what happened and he said, ‘I didn’t even touch him (Gonzalez),”‘ Manning said. “He has worked so hard in the offseason, I just hope it’s not a season-ending injury.”
Defensively, things went smoother.
“They just did a great job in the red zone stifling our offense,” Jones-Drew said. “My hat’s off to them. But we have to learn how to finish.”
Otherwise, it was a solid effort.
Jacksonville finished with 228 total yards, and had one last chance to win it – just it did last year on
After running back
Garrard started with a 2-yard pass to Jones-Drew, who dropped a pass on second down. Indy then pressured Garrard into back-to-back incompletions, including a desperation fourth-down flip, while being surrounded by
“I thought, ‘Here we go again, we have a great chance,”‘ Garrard said. “You love to be in that situation. We were trying to get the ball to Maurice, but you’ve got to slow those pass rushers down. We did what we could do.”