Tony Gonzalez on Colts: ‘They’re dangerous as hell’

The Indianapolis Colts are one of the hottest teams in football right now. After starting the season at 1-5, the Colts would win 9 of their next 10 games to make the playoffs. Last week, in the wild-card game against Texans, the Colts dominated the Texans in Houston 21-7 to advance to the divisional round to face the Chiefs at Arrowhead on Saturday.

“They’re dangerous as hell,” former Chiefs TE Tony Gonzalez told TMZ Sports about the Colts. “It’s a scary team.”

Gonzalez thinks the Colts-Chiefs will be a very competitive game, and he believes it could be similar to what happened in 2004(2003 season) when the Colts beat the Chiefs in the divisional round of the playoffs 38-31 at Arrowhead.

“I remember back in 2003 when we had the number one offense in the NFL. Priest Holmes and the best offensive line ever, Willie Roaf, Will Shields, and we played against Peyton Manning, and there were no punts in the game,” Gonzalez said. “There were literally no punts in a playoff game, and we had one turnover. They got the ball and went down and scored, and that’s how they won. I gotta feeling it’s going to be close; it’s going to be an exciting game, but I think Mahomes, he’s the real deal, and I think he’s going to score a lot of points.”

They’re a lot of similarities between the 2003 Chiefs and the current version of the team. Both teams put up a lot of points(2003: 30.3 ppg, 2018: 35.3 ppg) and both teams struggled on defense(2003: 29th ranked defense, 2018: 31st ranked defense). Conversely, for the Colts, they had a big-time QB in Peyton Manning back then, and have a QB who is playing at a high level in Andrew Luck. According to the NFL, Mahomes, who led the NFL with 50 touchdown passes, and Luck, who ranked second with 39 touchdown passes in 2018, have the most combined regular-season passing touchdowns (89) among any opposing quarterbacks in a playoff game in the Super Bowl era.

History could be on the side of the Colts as Indianapolis is 4-0 against Kansas City in the playoffs, including an epic, come from behind victory in the 2013 season when the Colts came back from a 28-point second half deficit to beat K.C. 45-44, but in the end, Gonzalez is going with the Chiefs.

“I’m picking the Chiefs, and not because I have to either, but I think they’re going to play well.”

This has the makings of a very great game. The Colts are playing well on both sides of the ball and the Chiefs defense is not very good, but the Chiefs can put up a lot of points, and the game is at Arrowhead(7-1 at home). The thought is to go with the hot team, which favors the Colts. However, in the AFC, the last five number one seeds have made the Super Bowl.

In his first playoff game, could the moment be too big for Mahomes? I don’t think so. No moment has been too big for Mahomes this season, and with over 5000 yards and 50 touchdowns through the air, Mahomes is probably the league’s MVP.

I expect a back-and-forth contest, and it might come down to who has the ball last, but whatever happens, expect a lot of points at Arrowhead on Saturday.

 

 

Advertisements

NFL announces Wild Card and Divisional Playoff Schedule

The NFL announced tonight the schedule of sites, dates and times for the National Football League Wild Card Playoffs on January 5-6 and Divisional Playoffs on January 12-13.

 

NFL WILD CARD PLAYOFFS

Saturday, January 5
AFC   4:35 PM (ET)  Tennessee-Indianapolis winner at Houston (ESPN, with simulcast on ABC)
NFC:    8:15 PM (ET)  Seattle at Dallas (FOX)

Sunday, January 6

AFC:    1:05 PM (ET)  Los Angeles Chargers at Baltimore (CBS)
NFC:    4:40 PM (ET)  Philadelphia at Chicago (NBC)​

NFL DIVISIONAL PLAYOFFS

Saturday, January 12

AFC   4:35 PM (ET) Baltimore/Los Angeles Chargers/Indianapolis or Tennessee at Kansas City (NBC)
NFC:    8:15 PM (ET) Chicago/Dallas/Seattle at Los Angeles Rams (FOX)

Sunday, January 13

AFC   1:05 PM (ET) Houston/Baltimore/Los Angeles Chargers at New England (CBS)
NFC:    4:40 PM (ET) Dallas/Seattle/Philadelphia at New Orleans (FOX)

In the Divisional Playoffs, the division champion with the best record in each conference will host the lowest seeded Wild Card survivor.  Once teams are seeded for the playoffs, positions do not change:

American Football Conference

National Football Conference

  1. Kansas City (12-4), AFC West champion
  1. New Orleans (13-3), NFC South champion
  1. New England (11-5), AFC East champion
  1. Los Angeles Rams (13-3), NFC West champion
  1. Houston (11-5), AFC South champion
  1. Chicago (12-4), NFC North champion
  1. Baltimore (10-6), AFC North champion
  1. Dallas (10-6), NFC East champion
  1. Los Angeles Chargers (12-4)
  1. Seattle (10-6)
  1. Indianapolis/Tennessee (10-6)*
  1. Philadelphia (9-7)

The NFC (FOX, 3:05 PM ET) and AFC (CBS, 6:40 PM ET) Championship Games will be played on Sunday, January 20.

The 2019 Pro Bowl (ESPN, with simulcast on ABC, 3:00 PM ET) will be played on Sunday, January 27 at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Florida and Super Bowl LIII will take place on Sunday, February 3 (CBS, 6:30 PM ET), at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia.

*NOTE: Should the Indianapolis-Tennessee game end in a tie, Pittsburgh will be the AFC No. 6 seed and play at Houston in the Wild Card playoffs.

Complete Week 17 schedule; Colts-Titans flexed to SNF

The Indianapolis Colts will face the Tennessee Titans on Sunday Night Football on NBC, the NFL announced today.

The winner of the Indianapolis-Tennessee game will advance to the NFL playoffs.

If the Kansas City Chiefs defeat the Seattle Seahawks in tonight’s game, Kansas City will host the Oakland Raiders at 1 p.m. ET Sunday on CBS.  If Seattle defeats Kansas City, the Raiders-Chiefs game will be played at 4:25 p.m. ET on CBS.

A look at the Week 17 schedule (all times ET):

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Atlanta Falcons at Tampa Bay Buccaneers 1:00 PM FOX
Carolina Panthers at New Orleans Saints 1:00 PM FOX
Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants 1:00 PM FOX
Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers 1:00 PM FOX
Jacksonville Jaguars at Houston Texans 1:00 PM CBS
Miami Dolphins at Buffalo Bills 1:00 PM CBS
New York Jets at New England Patriots 1:00 PM CBS
Oakland Raiders at Kansas City Chiefs* 1:00 or 4:25 PM CBS
Arizona Cardinals at Seattle Seahawks 4:25 PM FOX
Chicago Bears at Minnesota Vikings 4:25 PM FOX
Cincinnati Bengals at Pittsburgh Steelers 4:25 PM CBS
Cleveland Browns at Baltimore Ravens 4:25 PM CBS
Los Angeles Chargers at Denver Broncos 4:25 PM CBS
Philadelphia Eagles at Washington Redskins 4:25 PM FOX
San Francisco 49ers at Los Angeles Rams 4:25 PM FOX
Indianapolis Colts at Tennessee Titans 8:20 PM NBC

NFL announces schedule change in Week 16

The NFL announced today the following schedule change for Week 16 (December 23):

The New York Giants at Indianapolis Colts game originally scheduled for 1:00 PM ET on FOX will move to 1:00 PM ET on CBS.

The following is the final Week 16 NFL schedule (all times ET):

Saturday, December 22

Washington at Tennessee 4:30 PM NFLN
Baltimore at Los Angeles Chargers 8:20 PM NFLN

Sunday, December 23

Atlanta at Carolina 1:00 PM FOX
Cincinnati at Cleveland 1:00 PM CBS
Tampa Bay at Dallas 1:00 PM FOX
Minnesota at Detroit 1:00 PM FOX
New York Giants at Indianapolis 1:00 PM CBS
Jacksonville at Miami 1:00 PM CBS
Buffalo at New England 1:00 PM CBS
Green Bay at New York Jets 1:00 PM FOX
Houston at Philadelphia 1:00 PM CBS
Los Angeles Rams at Arizona 4:05 PM FOX
Chicago at San Francisco 4:05 PM FOX
Pittsburgh at New Orleans 4:25 PM CBS
Kansas City at Seattle 8:20 PM NBC
   

Monday, December 24

Denver at Oakland 8:15 PM ESPN

Jags QB Kessler: ‘Hoping to get the guys to rally around me and turn this thing around’

On Monday, the Jacksonville Jaguars fired their offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett. Later in that same day, the team named backup QB Cody Kessler the starter for their upcoming game against the Colts on Sunday. The 25-year-old Kessler will replace Blake Bortles, who has struggled mightily this season. In 11 games, Bortles has thrown only 13 touchdowns and 10 interceptions.

Even though Bortles lost his job, he has been supportive, according to Kessler.

“Blake has been great. We have already talked a couple times and even in the meetings and stuff he has been in there helping me out,” Kessler said. “I told him if there is anything I miss or something that might be better done this way or something you have seen before, just let me know. He was the same way back. He said if there are any questions you have or anything I am right here, and I am going to help you out. We have really built a relationship over the time I have been here. There is really no one else I would like to have in the quarterback room helping me out as well.”

For Kessler, this is an opportunity to try to jumpstart the 3-8 Jaguars, who are on a seven-game losing streak, and a chance to jumpstart his career.

“As a competitor, I am excited. It is tough to get opportunities in this league,” Kessler said on Wednesday. “To have one, I am very excited. We have had a close quarterback room, so when things happen like that it is part of the business, but at the same time it is a little rough. Just moving forward on this side. It is a great opportunity for me this week. Hoping to get the guys to rally around me and turn this thing around. I am really looking forward to it.”

Kessler, who is 0-8 as a starter, did replace an ineffective Bortles in Week 7 against the Texans, but the third-year quarterback has not started a game since 2016 when he was a rookie with the Browns.  At that time, the Browns were struggling like the Jaguars are right now; something Kessler noted today.

“In Cleveland, that was a while back; it wasn’t the greatest situation there. There was a lot of adversity,” Kessler explained. “A lot of tough things. It is kind of the same thing here right now, 3-8 and a lot of frustration. At the same time, I have always believed it is a new week, a new opportunity.  Getting these guys to really play for me is something that I really want to prove this week and show them I am ready to go. I don’t really care about the record. I am just going out there [with this] as an opportunity. I want to go out there and ball and just have some fun.”

With their playoffs chances pretty much done, the Jaguars are playing for pride. Sometimes changes will rejuvenate a team, and maybe the changes at offensive coordinator and quarterback will do just that for Jacksonville. We’ll find out on Sunday against the Colts.

Colts GM Chris Ballard to Patriots: ‘The rivalry is back on'(WATCH)

Josh McDaniels has become public enemy number one in Indianapolis after spurning the Colts and deciding to stay in New England as the offensive coordinator.

Colts GM Chris Ballard is not happy. He discussed his thoughts on McDaniels changing his mind at a press conference today.

Take a listen:

Tony Dungy rips Josh McDaniels for backing out of Colts job

New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels was all set to take the Colts job after agreeing to be the head coach of the team three weeks ago.

However, he changed his mind yesterday and decided to stay in New England as the offensive coordinator.

Unfortunately, McDaniels started to assemble a staff in Indianapolis and already hired three assistants.

Now, those assistants must figure out their futures.

Hall of Famer and former Colts head coach Tony Dungy, who is currently an NFL analyst for NBC Sports, tweeted his thoughts on McDaniels backing out of the deal to coach the Colts:

With a report out there that Andrew Luck might need another shoulder surgery (Colts GM Chris Ballard says that is not the case), you could see why McDaniels would have second thoughts.

While I understand Dungy’s point, McDaniels ultimately has to do what is best for him and his family.

T.Y. Hilton: ‘We gotta take some pride up front’

The Indianapolis Colts took a beating today against the Jaguars.  Indy lost 27-0 at home.

The Jaguars’ defense sacked Colts quarterback Jacoby Brissett 10 times! It’s safe to say that the Colts’ offensive line had a long day!

Colts WR T.Y. Hilton was not happy with the play of the Colts’ offensive line.

Hilton discussed the Colts’ O-line after the game, and it was not nice:

Colts coach Chuck Pagano gives credit to the wrong team

Wanna get away? This is what probably is going through the mind of Colts head coach Chuck Pagano right now. First, Pagano’s team was routed 46-9 by the Rams on Sunday in Los Angeles.

Next, Pagano forgot what team his Colts played today. He gave credit to the 49ers, instead of the Rams.

Take a listen:

 

Colts QB Andrew Luck ruled out for Week One; Scott Tolzien to start

The Colts announced on Monday that their starting QB Andrew Luck will miss the team’s season opener against the Rams. Backup QB Scott Tolzien will get the start.

Luck, 27, underwent shoulder surgery back in January, and at this point, is not completely ready to go.

Should be interesting to see how long Luck will be out for Indy.