JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (DECEMBER 13, 2015) – The Colts’ offensive woes continued in Sunday’s 51-16 loss to the Jaguars, failing to score a touchdown and dropping to 26th overall in the NFL in total offense. Even in the first half, when the Colts hit several big plays, the offense was still not completely in-sync.
Certainly, no one will scoff at a 10-point lead late in the first half; the Colts held a 13-3 advantage until Jacksonville scored with 1:01 left in the second quarter. However, that 10-point lead was just 10 yards away from being 18 points. The team’s two first half drives that resulted in field goals ended on the seven and the three yard lines.
“We didn’t take advantage of our opportunities,” explained head coach Chuck Pagano after the loss. “We got the ball down in the Red Zone and couldn’t convert third downs. We had to settle for field goals again.”
Entering week 14, the Colts scored touchdowns on roughly 56 percent of their Red Zone possessions, ranked 18th in the NFL. Their oh-fer performance in Jacksonville dropped them to 23rd in the league, near 52 percent.
“There was opportunities,” Pagano continued, “and there was plays to be made: Throws, catches, runs after the catch, all that stuff. (There were) plays to be made, and we just didn’t make them.”
The Colts’ Red Zone failures Sunday continue a recent trend. Week 13 in Pittsburgh, they converted just one of six Red Zone possessions into a touchdown.
“We have to fix our Red Zone offense,” said wide receiver T.Y. Hilton. “It is what it is. We have to score. We can’t settle for three. We have a great kicker in Adam (Vinatieri), but at the end of the day, if we keep kicking field goals, we’ll be sitting at home at the end of week 17.”
Illuminating the Colts’ struggles on Sunday even more so is the fact that the Jaguars defense entered the week second-worst in the NFL in allowing Red Zone touchdowns, with 68 percent of opponent drives finishing in the end zone. That insufficiency was clearly and completely masked by the Colts’ ineptitude Sunday afternoon.