Behind Enemy Lines: Indianapolis Colts
Sports Illustrated's Raider Maven goes behind enemy lines to get the latest information on the Raiders' upcoming AFC opponents for the 2021 NFL season straight from the source covering them.
This game may have finished the season, but with another week added to the schedule, the Raiders are heading to Indianapolis on Week 17.
Jake Arthur has covered the Indianapolis Colts for nearly a decade, and he is now the Senior Analyst for Sports Illustrated Horseshoe Huddle. He recently joined Raider Maven's Editor and Publisher Hondo Carpenter on the radio to inform Raider nation what the Colts are up to before training camp. Carpenter was co-hosting with Clay Baker on the "Pritch & Clay" morning show on Raider Nation Radio (LINK TO LISTEN LIVE).
"This is just the perfect place for it. It's really revealed how close Frank Reich and Carson Wentz were in their days in Philly, and just how they feel about each other and how well they work together. It just seems like this is really gonna work out," Arthur said.
Carson Wentz was traded this offseason from Philadelphia, reuniting with his old offensive coordinator Frank Reich. Everyone in the organization expects Wentz to return to his old form when he led the Eagles to the Super Bowl.
Wentz will be the Colts' biggest X-factor this season. He comes into a team that is well built and has no significant concerns offensively.
"The Colts don't have a bunch of high superstar names on the offense but they've kind of got a deep, deep group of guys who are dependable," Arthur added. "They've got two or three quality tight ends, their running game was really good. Pretty much everyone in the receiver corps is capable of at least moving the chains."
Last year's match-up against the Colts exposed the Raiders' rushing defense, as Jonathan Taylor ran for 150 yards and two touchdowns.
The Colts' defense does not see any significant changes. This young, athletic group is led by linebacker Darius Leonard, who has arguably become one of the best linebackers in the league. He finished last year's match-up with 11 tackles.
DeForest Buckner was a steal and is expected to return to his Pro Bowl form and help this team push for a deep playoff run.
According to Arthur, the floor for these Colts are 11 wins while the ceiling is 12. The Colts will be in contention to make the playoffs. The AFC South is up for grabs between Colts and the Tennessee Titans. The Jacksonville Jaguars and the Houston Texans find themselves at the bottom of the division and the league.
Being so late into the season, this game will have many implications for both teams as they'll try to push their way into the playoffs.
Wentz should build confidence moving forward, but the Colts' rushing attack will need to be stopped if the Raiders plan to leave Indy with a win and a spot into the playoffs.
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