ReFo: Colts @ Giants, Week 9
Highlighting standout performances, Ben Stockwell shares notes on Vontae Davis, Robert Ayers and more from the Colts' comfortable win over the Giants on Monday Night.
ReFo: Colts @ Giants, Week 9
The Indianapolis Colts bounced back quickly from surrendering 50 points in Pittsburgh last week and head into their bye after a comfortable victory over the New York Giants. A sloppy fourth quarter will probably be the source of some annoyance, but they did plenty enough through the first 45 minutes to capitalize on New York miscues and build a big lead that let them coast through the final stanza.
The Giants got some stellar individual performances but there were too many poor displays around that for those players to be anything more than window dressing in a two-score defeat that could so easily have been bigger.
Indianapolis Colts – Performances of Note
Vontae Davis, CB: +4.4
Breakdown: Taking over as our top-graded corner through nine games, Davis was at his very best last night in spite of a busy night in coverage. Targeted 12 times, Davis surrendered only four catches for 49 yards breaking up one pass (that he might have intercepted) and tipping another which Reuben Randle was able to grab on the way down.
Signature Stat: Though nine games Davis is only allowing 42.2% of targets into his coverage to be completed and a 40.2 passer rating; both second best in the league.
Andrew Luck, QB: -1.6
Breakdown: The numbers look extremely impressive from Luck (four touchdowns, no interceptions) and there were certainly some very impressive throws last night but there were also a lot of missed throws which drag his grade down. This was Luck from previous years in a nut shell and not the one we saw earlier in the season, the excellent throws such as his touchdown pass to Reggie Wayne were met in balance and more by inaccurate throws that a quarterback of Luck’s (or any) standing shouldn’t be missing.
Signature Stat: Accounted for 10 incompletions last night through inaccurate passes, more than he had in the first three weeks of the season combined.
Jonathan Newsome, OLB: +2.7
Breakdown: Making plays in both run and pass game Newsome turned in the highest grade of his career to date recording as many stops (five) as he had in the first eight games of his career. Splitting the indecisive pairing of William Beatty and Weston Richburg for his first sack, Newsome simply took to the outside of Beatty late in the third quarter to strip the ball from Eli Manning in his throwing motion for his second to set up Dwayne Allen’s 2-yard score.
Signature Play: More than made his mark as a run defender as well such as at 12:01 in the fourth beating Justin Pugh inside to take Peyton Hillis down deep in the backfield.
New York Giants – Performances of Note
Robert Ayers, DE: +12.9
Breakdown: Continuing to work off the bench, Ayers channeled J.J. Watt last night, destroying the Colts’ interior offensive line in a stunning pass rushing display. A strip sack was paired with half a dozen hits and half a dozen hurries in comfortably the most productive game of his career, he only got nine more pressures in his entire rookie season (5 Ht, 17 Hu) than he did last night.
Signature Play: Spared the Giants any further deficit on the final play of the second quarter, ripping past Lance Louis to take down Andrew Luck who fumbled to close out the first half.
Eli Manning, QB: -4.2
Breakdown: Manning’s performances have yo-yoed either side of the Giants’ bye week as he produced a performance reminiscent of the defeat in Philadelphia rather than the valiant effort in Dallas. The volume of yards and lack of touchdowns hide a performance marred by inaccuracy and forced throws that only really came together with the game all but out of reach in the final quarter.
Signature Stat: Blitzed 16 times last night Manning was sacked as many times (three) as he completed a pass.
Mathias Kiwanuka, DE: -4.1 & Jason Pierre-Paul, DE: -1.6
Breakdown: While Ayers was tearing things up on the inside in sub-packages, the Giants’ starting defensive ends had a pedestrian night rushing off the edge. Their two pressures each came on a combined 90 pass rushes, Damontre Moore matched that production on just 15 pass rushes.
Signature Stat: After nine weeks Pierre-Paul (7.4) and Kiwanuka (5.5) sit 59th and 72nd, respectively, among all edge rushers (with at least 100 pass rushes) in Pass Rushing Productivity.
PFF Game Ball
In a losing effort Robert Ayers was playing on a level that very few defensive linemen reach even in isolated games, this performance might be all too easily overlooked in a heavy home defeat.
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Ben Stockwell | Director of Analysis
Ben joined Pro Football Focus in 2007, and has since been in charge of the company’s analysis process. He also contributes to PFF’s weekly NFL podcast.