Posted Wed Dec 9th by Monty
Streak: Won 21
Series vs. Denver: Broncos, 11-6
Last time: Colts, 38-20, 2007
The Line: Colts by 7
Who’s hot: You mean besides everyone? The Colts are 12-0, and the whole team is playing well. But we’ll roll with the obvious: QB Peyton Manning. Manning is having a supreme year even by his own lofty standards, averaging over 300 passing yards per game (1st in the NFL). He’s only been sacked 10 times despite dropping back 460 times (that’s one sack every 46 attempts), and he has 25 touchdowns to 11 interceptions on the season.
Who’s not: RB Joseph Addai. The Colts rank dead last in rushing yards (87.7 rushing yards per game), and Addai is averaging a relatively measly 3.7 yards per carry. His season-high is 79 yards (against the Tennessee Titans last week), and he’s only eclipsed 70 yards twice this season. All in all, though, this speaks more to the fact that the Colts are a pass-first team than that Addai is struggling. His nine rushing touchdowns show he’s a dangerous option when the Colts want him to be.
Matchup to watch: DE Dwight Freeney vs. OT Ryan Clady. The Colts are a quick-strike, high-scoring team, which means the Broncos are going to need to score points to match. One of the more crucial matchups when the Broncos have the ball is Clady on Freeney. Clady is coming off the statistically worst game of his career, giving up two sacks and a forced fumble to Tamba Hali (Hali would add another sack and forced fumble against Daniel Graham). Freeney has 10.5 sacks on the season (note that that’s half a sack more than the number his quarterback has suffered), and his speed and smaller size give him the most lethal spin move in the league. Clady’s going to need to stay quick on his feet and live up to his All-Fundamentals honor if the Broncos hope to match the Colts’ offensive points production.