HI, SICKOS! THANKS FOR CLICKING ON THIS WEEK’S COLTS GAME RECAP. I’M NOT SURE IF YOU’RE A MASOCHIST OR MERELY CLICKED SO NATE MILLER AND I CAN PROVIDE HOT MEALS FOR OUR FAMILIES, BUT THANK YOU FOR INEXPLICABLY BEING HERE! APOLOGIES FOR YELLING—I’M CURRENTLY STANDING IN FRONT OF A JET ENGINE TURBINE (WHICH I’M ABOUT TO LEAP INTO), READY TO SCREAM AT YOU ABOUT THE COLTS’ 24-0 LOSS. AMAZINGLY, AFTER FANS HAD TO EAT A SHIT SANDWICH FOR EIGHT STRAIGHT MONTHS FOLLOWING INDY’S SEASON-ENDER IN JACKSONVILLE LAST JANUARY, GUESS WHAT YOUR COLTS SERVED ON THE MENU YESTERDAY???
NATE, I KNOW YOU’RE FILMING THIS ON YOUR IPHONE 5C, BUT I NEED YOU TO PUT THAT DOWN ON THE TARMAC AND TELL US: WHERE DOES THIS TEAM POSSIBLY GO FROM HERE?
MILLER: I hate this team. I hate its gutlessness. I hate its construction. I hate its philosophy. I hate its arrogance—its continuous and prolonged refusal to accept reality. I hate its identity. I hate its inauthenticity. I hate its hashtags. Fuck this team with an anvil.
All that said, you know what the WORST part of yesterday was? The worst part was this: Jim Irsay didn’t—or hasn’t yet, at least—gone full Willy Wonka and started dispatching folks down bubblegum sewers and so forth. No incoherent rants on Twitter. Nothing inflammatory. He didn’t even shove Chris Ballard into the St. Johns River and make him canoe back to Indy. The old man’s gone corporate for the time being, all buttoned-up and boring, and now I’m wondering why we should even care at all. What are we even doing here??
SCHULTZ: First, leave the #anvil out of your mouth! It is an innocent (and amazing/timeless/special) third party. Second, you’re not wrong! We have been instructed to write a recap for each Colts game, but what is there to recap from yesterday? Negatives? We’d need to turn this six-graph recap into a 40-page Adam Wren feature. Positives? What positives? I’m not sure a single Colts played well (Grover Stewart? Jonathan Taylor in garbage time?). Hell, I’m not sure if some (Parris Campbell? Is he still on the roster?) played at all! Blame? Everyone is to blame! Irsay, Ballard, Reich & Co. talked all offseason about how they would redeem themselves and they were going to flush the dump they took in Jacksonville to end last season. Yesterday afternoon, all they did was scoop the feces out of the bowl and smear them all over their living room.
MILLER: I’m serious: Where’s the institutional chaos after yesterday?? Where’s the irrational retribution? We want some wild-eyed reckoning, and we want it RIGHT NOW. Give us … something. Anything.
We expect Matt Ryan to be passionless and polite—he’s a 37-year-old Talbots store on loan from Buckhead.
We expect Frank Reich to be passionless and polite—nobody wants their preacher waxing crazy all up in the microphone, like DMX.
We expect Chris Ballard to be passionless and polite—he is, after all, an arrogant and fictional Claire Bee character from the 1950s who does not actually exist. Eagle Scouts always keep their cool, mister! Bollocks to that.
So when it’s time to set our phasers to IRRATIONAL, we turn to that endless and wonderful fountain of irrationality: Jim Irsay. He is our passion North Star, usually. Our motor. Our rocketship to revolt. Time to ride, amigo.
On days like today, we want our gross Colts-fan ID splattered across social media like a Jackson Pollock painting. We want unhinged TikTok tirades, the kind where there may be illicit drugs and/or boobs in the background—the kind that lets people know that this particular Crazy means BUSINESS. We want existential threats and haikus to rain down from high atop the Zamboni in his lair. We want rage; at the very least, it lets us know that someone else cares.
And what have we gotten? Nothing. Zip. Not even a whisper of Crazy. Nothing even rock-the-boat-y. Instead, we get a cliched photo-op of a Not Mad™ NFL owner handing out signed $140 footballs to fans, all while not even naked or anything. Disgusting. Passionless ingrates, the whole lot of them! I hate this team. ((DONE!!!! Good night.))
SCHULTZ: We’re going to keep this relatively short because there isn’t a lot to say. Amazingly, there are 15 games left to either continue hating this team or, somehow, start having fun watching them again. You hate having to tear up whatever season blueprint that you had in your head and have The State Of The Team address after Week 2, but that’s what this has to be. Had the Colts merely lost, well, then you could have a discussion about “long season” and “turnarounds” and yadda yadda. You just can’t do that right now. This year’s Colts have too many questions and not enough answers. Will Jim Irsay ever put a team on the field again that matches his antique guitar collection? How long does Chris Ballard need to find good-enough players at the positions that actually matter when it comes to winning football games? How many uninspired and undisciplined performances from Frank Reich’s team do Colts fans (and me, noted Frank Reich Apologist) forgive? When does this franchise and this “special locker room” stop getting dick-kicked by the Jaguars? How could anyone possibly trust the people in charge of this franchise right now?
Finally, when do we get to actually enjoy Indianapolis Colts football again?