Finally fans got a decent game on Thursday Night Football. After a series of blowouts on the NFL Network’s showcase night of live games, the Colts and Texans put on a great game this week. Having J.J. Watt and Andrew Luck on the field at the same time certainly made the game interesting from the start. These two young players are at the top of their game and I was glad to have the chance to see them go at it.
This one could have gone the way of all the other Thursday night games this year. A blowout could have happened easily as the Colts opened up with a scoring barrage. They ended up leading Houston 24-0 after just one quarter of play. T.Y. Hilton made a couple of highlight reel catches and Luck was deadly accurate early in this game and finished 25/44 with three touchdown passes for the game.
The Texans made a game of it with their defense and got a couple of quick scores before the half to get it close at 27-14. J.J. Watt had another touchdown in this contest, which is becoming a habit for the big man. He also turned in two more sacks on the year and three pass deflections. The guy is truly a one man gang on defense. When Jadeveon Clowney returns to action, this Texans defense will be a scary event on opponents’ calendars the rest of the way.
Houston had a chance to win this one at the end but fell short 33-28. The Texans could have folded after getting punched in the head in the first period, but to their credit they kept in the game with some big plays on offense and defense. The game was a good one for the Colts as they got a divisional win. This contest also meant a lot for the NFL Network. They certainly didn’t need another lopsided game that viewers only watched through the third quarter.
One of the biggest takeaways from this game for fans, was getting to see the greatness of Andrew Luck in progress. He is only going to get better for the next few years. He is already among the top five quarterbacks in the league. Watching a young Peyton Manning and Tom Brady was great but we may not have realized how good they would become. I know for a fact how good Luck is going to be, unless injury stops him at some point. It is good to be able to appreciate greatness as it is shaped game in and game out.
I don’t know what to say about J.J. Watt. He is so dominant every time he steps on the field. He doesn’t have to lay a finger on the QB to disrupt the offense. His constant threat is enough to cause the opponents major headaches. He also just has a knack for finding the ball. Whether he is deflecting multiple passes a game or scooping up fumbles for a quick rumble to the endzone, the ball is like a magnet to #99. I don’t know how much time offensive coordinators spend on avoiding Watt‘s side of the field in game prep, but it is not enough apparently. Offensive linemen are a proud lot, but if they were being truthful, they would say that Watt gives them nightmares and causes them to get scolded in film rooms after games with the Texans.
The NFL is the NFL because of players like Luck and Watt. Guys like these are the stars of NFL Films. They make players around them better and make their coaches look smarter. On this night they even made Thursday Night Football competitive for a change.