Atlanta Falcons: Which Colts players should Falcons be prepared for?

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Oct 18, 2015; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck (12) throws a pass against the New England Patriots in the first half during the NFL game at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports

Many expected a playoff bye and possibly a Super Bowl berth for the Colts this year. What’s gone wrong, and how close is this team to achieving the ultimate goal?

ER: It starts and ends with Andrew Luck. He hasn’t played well and unless his injury happened in the first drive of the season against the Bills, he can only blame himself for the 0-2 start to the year. It is easy to blame injuries, but some of Luck’s issues extend beyond his physical abilities. He’s made bad reads, aims his passes, presses far too often, and holds the ball too long. Even when he scrambles he puts himself in harm’s way by not sliding, with the lacerated kidney largely being his fault.

There are minor flaws all over this roster, but the simple fact of the matter is that if Luck had been playing better, this would be a one or two loss team.

Which players must the Falcons be most prepared for?

ER: Offensively, Frank Gore. With Luck out, the Colts are going to run the ball more and Gore has been itching for more carries. When Hasselbeck was starting last time, the Colts tried to get him more involved in the passing game and I believe that will hold true as Atlanta struggles to cover running backs.

Defensively, Robert Mathis. He’s finally returned to form after a tough road over the past year and a half. Returning home and feeling healthy, Mathis is overdue for a big game.

Next: What's the prediction for the game?