When Reggie Wayne stepped to the podium as the Celebrity Selector for the Colts at the 2019 NFL Draft in Nashville, he boldly responded to boos from the Titans fans in attendance by mocking the franchise, “Oh, I know you’re not booing,” #87 defiantly claimed. “I played you guys 20 times and you won three games!” Ah, the good old days! Since those comments, Tennessee has doubled its win total against the Colts from that dozen-year span in the rivalry, winning for the fifth straight time and sixth time in the last eight head-to-head meetings after coming out on top in yesterday’s 19-10 slapfight.SCHULTZ: Now 1½ games back (stupid tie) and without the benefit of the tiebreaker, the Colts appear to be on the verge of notwinning the crappy AFC South for the eighth straight year. While that division drought would’ve been unheard of during the large majority of Reggie Wayne’s career, this is now the reality: Indy has swapped places with Tennessee as a mediocre little brother of the South. Nate, you’re a little brother, so I’m sure you get it …MILLER: Don’t forget how I’m exceptionally mediocre, too!! And also how I was constructed with very little foresight or expertise. So yes, Derek—I very much “get it.” Wish I didn’t. But this Colts team isn’t just that. It’s so much less!!This team is the worst kind of mediocre: boring-mediocre. Truly the worst of all worlds. And they are boring-mediocre because, in the end, they are SCARED, and they always have been. They are scared to take risks, organizationally speaking, because oftentimes risks backfire. Risks carry the very real chance of the risk-taker looking foolish, and looking foolish—to the Colts—is verboten. It’s the only thing truly off-limits for the franchise. That is how we find ourselves in the position we’re in now, and why we’re already dreading being forced to watch Joe Flacco be our quarterback next year. Joe Flacco looks the part, after all, and looking the part is all that matters to the Colts. It’s safer that way, you see. SCHULTZ: Flacco? Please don’t speak that into existence. I’m a big sample size person and the Colts have now given us a seven-game sample size to go on, which is actually longer than a recently departed prime minister’s tenure. In six of those games, the Indy offense has been a total disaster. They’ve averaged 13.1 points in those six games, which would make them the worst offense in the NFL in 1952 (Fact-check me! I looked this up!), much less 2022. In the other game, they scored 34 against the Jaguars, putting together six different scoring drives. So, which is the outlier: the one good game they had against the Jaguars or the other 360 minutes of football they played this year???? So difficult to determine.MILLER
: I’m confused as to why we’re still discussing this team or that game, or any of the Colts games. Why are we doing this? Why are they PAYING us to do this? This is like recapping a failed bar exam attempt.
SCHULTZ: Bottom line is this offense stinks. There is absolutely zero reason to believe this offense won’t stink at any point this year. It’s survivable once in a while (hi, Denver!), but if you’re going to score 10, 12, 13, 17 points on a regular basis, you are completely screwed. Even a one-legged Ryan Tannehill can beat that.
MILLER: Accept this team’s fate, Derek. Accept that the Colts are mind-numbingly average. You’re still at the Maybe The Colts Can Turn It Around™ stage. Jump on in. The water’s tepid. And boring. And now you just stand here for a few years.
SCHULTZ: I don’t remember what the stages of grief are, and unlike the 1952 NFL team offense statistics, I’m too lazy to look it up, but I’m officially on wherever the acceptance/apathy phase is. Like me, I think Colts fans have completely lost faith that this Ballard-Reich braintrust can turn this thing around, either in 2022 or in the future. Outside of a top-halfish defense and a handful of young standouts like Alec Pierce, I don’t see many positives to latch onto. The 3-3-1 Colts are exactly where they’ve been for the last seven seasons … they’re stuck in the middle. I think you’re right: This looks like a team heading for 8-8-1, compounding another frustrating season with a meh draft pick, and that’s the absolute worst place to be.
MILLER: NOW YOU’RE ON THE TROLLEY!! *kicks pebble into the sun all dejectedly*
SCHULTZ: But don’t let that deter you from clicking on these recaps every week, dear imaginary readers who probably don’t exist! We still have three months of mediocre football to dissect, and dammit, these pig hearts are gonna get sliced up! See you next week after the epic Matt Ryan-Taylor Heinicke battle.