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Week 1 Game Recap: Indianapolis Colts 9, Los Angeles Rams 46


What you need to know

Indianapolis Colts

The Colts offense had an abysmal performance against the Rams. Scott Tolzien was unable to make good decisions and avoid pressure. Tolzien had 2 interceptions that were returned for touchdowns and made another throw to Moncrief that could have been a 3rd. Tolzien seemed unresponsive to pressure, making no effort to move or escape the pocket. Tolzien was benched for Jacoby Brissett who orchestrated a touchdown drive upon entering the game. TY Hilton and Donte Moncrief both showed they are still dynamic playmakers but are in need of more consistent quarterback play to fantasy relevant. Jack Doyle caught 2 passes for 21 and 20 yards early in the game but was not involved in the offense as the game progressed. Marlon Mack showed off his playmaking ability with a 21 yard catch that may have been a touchdown and a 24 yard run but also lost a fumble.

Los Angeles Rams

The Rams dominated this game from the start of it they were incredibly efficient from a passing standpoint in this offense. Jared Goff has developed nicely compared to where he was last year looking comfortable and in command of this offense. Todd GurleyŪs running remains a concern as he averaged just 2.1 yards per carry in this game as he was unable to get anything going in this game. Cooper Kupp was terrific as he is a legitimate deep threat in this offense averaging 19 yards per reception in this game and continued his terrific form that we saw in the preseason.

Indianapolis Colts

QB Scott Tolzien, 41 offensive snaps, Pass: 9 - 18 - 128 - 0 TD / 2 INT, Rush: 2 - 2 - 0
Scott Tolzienís first throw was to TY Hilton who was blanketed by Trumaine Johnson. Johnson undercut the pass and returned the interception 39 yards for a touchdown. The pocket was collapsing around Tolzien when he threw but Hilton was never open. Tolzien was able to orchestrate some successful offense. Tolzien completed passes of 21, 20, 21, 10 and 16 before missing Kamar Aiken downfield for a potential big third down conversion. Tolzien was able to make a few plays but could not find consistency and he did not receive much help from his team. Tolzien was sacked on the Colts next two possessions forcing the Colts into difficult down and distances the offense could not overcome. Tolzienís second half included the same mistakes and failures as the first half without the positive plays. The Colts first 4 possessions of the 2nd half totaled -1 yards, 2 sacks and a pick six. Tolzien tried to find TY Hilton in the flat but was undercut by Lamarcus Joyner who intercepted the pass and returned it 29 yards for a touchdown. Tolzien was replaced by Jacoby Brissett.

RB Marlon Mack, 17 offensive snaps, Rush: 10 - 24 - 1, Rec: 1 - 21 - 0 (1 targets)
Marlon Mack showed his playmaking ability and that he will have a role in this offense going forward. The Colts got Mack involved early as receiver and featured him as a runner inside the Rams 5 yardline. Mack was knocked out of bounds at the 1 yard line after gaining 21 yards on a simple check down from Tolzien. Mack showed impressive burst on the play. Mack received 2 carries from inside the 5 yard line the following two plays but could not find the end zone. Mack got the edge thanks to a nice block from Donte Moncrief and ran down the sideline for 24 yards. Marlon Mack got another opportunity to score from inside the 5 yard line and took advantage with a 3 yard touchdown. The ensuing offensive play Mack got stood up in the backfield and was stripped. The fumble went into the Colts end zone but was recovered by Jacoby Brissett for a safety.

RB Frank Gore, 19 offensive snaps, Rush: 10 - 42 - 0, Rec: 1 - 10 - 0 (1 targets)
Frank Gore saw more snaps and the same number of touches as Marlon Mack and played well. Gore picked up 42 yards on his 10 carries compared to 24 for Mack. The game script makes it hard to predict usage going forward because the Colts trailed by a large margin the majority of the game. Gore followed a nice block from Anthony Costanzo and picked up 16 yards running off tackle. Gore caught a screen pass and fought through tacklers for a gain of 10.

WR T.Y. Hilton, 44 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 57 - 0 (7 targets)
TY Hilton looked like the same dynamic player who made huge plays for the Colts last season. Hilton made his first catch running a shallow crossing route for a 10 yard gain but had the ball punched out of his hands as he dove for additional yardage by Trumaine Johnson. Hilton made a 16 yard grab along the sideline beating Johnson on his next target. Hilton beat Kayvon Webster down the seam for a 32 yard gain.

WR Kamar Aiken, 26 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 3 - 0 (2 targets)
Kamar Aiken gained separation running a deep crossing route but Tolzienís throw was late and behind Aiken allowing the defender to knock the pass away. Aiken made his first catch early in the 3rd quarter running a shallow crossing route for a 3 yard gain.

WR Donte Moncrief, 45 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 50 - 0 (4 targets)
Donte Moncrief did not see his first target until late in the 3rd quarter. Moncrief caught his first pass from Jacoby Brissett running a 9 route but the throw was essentially a jump ball Moncrief hauled in for a 50 yard gain.

TE Jack Doyle, 46 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 41 - 0 (3 targets)
Jack Doyle saw a couple of targets early in the game but became a nonfactor with Tolzienís struggles. Doyle ran a shallow crossing route, beat his man, and escaped down the sideline for 21 yards. Doyle got wide open thanks to a busted coverage the ensuing play and picked up 20 more yards down the seam.


Los Angeles Rams

QB Jared Goff, 60 offensive snaps, Pass: 21 - 29 - 306 - 1 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 1 - 2 - 0
Jared Goff continues the development that we saw in the preseason. The matchup was a good one heading into this week against a Colts defense that is without Vontae Davis, but Goff was able to throw for his first 300 yard game of his career. The offensive line gave Goff all the time in the world to throw which allowed him to progress through his receivers very nicely. His best throw of the day was in the second quarter in which he hit rookie tight end Gerald Everett on a corner route in which Goff was able to place the ball perfectly to where only Everett could catch it.

RB Todd Gurley, 48 offensive snaps, Rush: 19 - 40 - 1, Rec: 5 - 56 - 0 (6 targets)
Todd Gurley looked the same as he did in 2016 which is disappointing as we had hoped that we would see some improvement since his disappointing year last year after not seeing much from him in the preseason. The issue continues to be that he has too many runs where he does not get any yardage as 9 of his 22 carries went for one yard or less. Gurley was able to find the end zone on a goal line shotgun carry where he was stopped at the one but a second effort found the end zone. The bright spot for Gurley is that he was productive in the passing game which made up for the lack of productivity in the rushing game. Gurley highlight was a play-action dump off pass that he was able to find open space to turn it into a 23 yard gain.

WR Sammy Watkins, 38 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 58 - 0 (5 targets)
Sammy Watkins played a role that we are typically not used to seeing him in, as he was used in short to intermediate routes in this game. He was able to catch all five of his targets including a 24 yard reception where Watkins made a nice adjustment to his route 14 yards downfield to find the soft spot in the zone defense and was able to run for an additional 10 yards after the catch.

WR Cooper Kupp, 39 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 76 - 1 (6 targets)
The rookie continues to be the one of the bright spots in this offense. The rookie out of Eastern Washington is showing why he was the most productive wide receiver in college football history. Kupp connected with Jared Goff for a touchdown on a deep crossing route in which he just ran past the wide receiver for an easy touchdown. Kupp made a great one-handed catch in which Goff overthrew him but Kupp was able to tip the ball to himself to make the catch on the run.

WR Robert Woods, 43 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 53 - 0 (5 targets)
Robert Woods was a surprise in this game as he was involved in down-field routes compared to his history as a possession receiver. Woods was able to connect with Goff on a deep crossing route in which Goff was able to hit him on the run for 27 yards. Woods led the wide receivers in snap counts as he was on the field for 66% of the offensive plays which is very encouraging moving forward for Woods.

WR Tavon Austin, 7 offensive snaps, Rush: 2 - 11 - 0, Rec: 1 - 7 - 0 (1 targets)
Austin appears to have lost his role in this new Sean McVay offense as he was only on the field for 7 offensive plays in this game after being on the field 72% of the plays last season.