Across the fansided network each week during this season, we will be doing a quick Q&A with the Falcons’ opponents for that week. This week I had a chance to talk with Adam Hughes from Naptown’s Finest about this Sundays match up between the Falcons and Colts.
Jamie Kelly – It’s a shame that Peyton Manning is injured, as the league is better off when he is on form. How serious is the neck injury? What are the chances he plays again?
Adam Hughes – The severity of the injury can be summed up, I think, that Manning is not on the field. No way would he have missed a single snap were the injury not potentially devastating for his long-term health. That said, I think the chances are pretty good that he’ll at least try to play again, but not this year. If he can even get in a few practice snaps before 2012 rolls in, it will be a major victory for him.
JK – I would be remiss if I did not ask. If the Colts get the #1 pick are they taking Andrew Luck?
AH – There certainly is a lot of clamor for Luck around here, but I’m still not confident that the Colts would actually take him. Bill Polian seems to love picking against the popular fan opinion, and it’s at least as likely that Indy would trade the pick or draft someone else as it is that Luck will be a Colt next season. If Manning were to retire or force a trade, then my answer might be different.
JK – It’s obviously been a terrible season for the Colts. Give me a few players that have played well despite the team’s lack of success.
AH – Linebacker Pat Angerer has been a revelation and may be one of the best defenders in the game. Rookie running back Delone Carter has been about what fans hoped he could be, and that’s a solid bruiser who can pick up the tough yards that have killed the Colts in third-and-one type situations. And, believe it or not, QB Curtis Painter has played fairly well. I think he’s certainly shown that he can be a legitimate NFL backup, and he has pleasantly surprised me.
JK – How will the Colts win this game? What do they have to do to have success against the Falcons.
AH - The Colts find a different way to lose every game, but their main bugaboo has been at the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball. They need Joseph Addai healthy and running, they need the offensive line to create some room and keep Painter off his back, and they need to plug up Michael Turner so the DEs can get an occasional shot at Ryan.
JK – Predictions for the game? Please give a score.
AH – Neither of these teams has looked very special to me this season, but the Colts are about as “unspecial” as it gets right now. I’ll give Indy some hometown advantage and keep the margin of loss under 20. I’ll take the Falcons, 24-10.