The Sports Daily > Colts Authority
18 Plays Write Up-49ers

Again, no podcast this week.  My laptop on which I do all the recording/editing is still in the shop.  You’ll just have to read.  Stop complaining.  I don’t care if it hurts your eyes.  You’re lazy!  Lazy ingrates all of you.  By the way, Eyes will be up later tonight or tomorrow.

First Quarter

  1. 2-4-SF 36 (11:28) 21-F.Gore up the middle for 64 yards, TOUCHDOWN

DS:  Muir gets manhandled by two blockers, and Johnson is well blocked also. Brackett gets blocked by the Center which springs Gore. Powers and Bethea blow the touchdown saving tackle by ramming into each other and missing the runner.

DZ:  Muir is the key here.  He gets shoved back about 5 yards, and as he’s falling to the ground, he wipes out Bob Sanders who looks to have a good shot on Gore.  Forget making the play, if he had only kept his footing, Sanders could have finished Gore for a short gain.  It’s hard to get too upset over this play. The run D was great the rest of the way.  It was one bad run.  Fix it and move on.

  1. 3-8-IND 25 (7:12) (Shotgun) 18-P.Manning pass short right to 87-R.Wayne pushed ob at SF 43 for 32 yards (36-S.Spencer)

DS: Trips right. Manning throws the screen to Wayne. Reggie follows good blocks by Baskett and Collie and Diem. Wayne gets to the outside. I thought Wayne looked a little hobbled on the run, but still a big play.

DZ:  Collie’s block is close to being OPI, but the defender engaged him, so I guess it’s ok.  Incredible block by Diem.  Reggie squeezes through for big yards.

  1. 3-2-SF 20 (4:09) 29-J.Addai right tackle to SF 20 for no gain (96-K.Balmer).

DS:  Your 2008 Indianapolis Colts. This looks like every bad run we’ve seen. It is not even totally clear who is at fault. There’s just not gap there whatsoever. San Fran’s front line is very good.

DZ:  It looks like the play is supposed to go wide but there is no hole.  Addai cuts inside where there is also no hole.  There was no hole.  There was no gain.  Fourth down.

  1. 1-10-SF 40 (1:18) 11-A.Smith pass deep right intended for 15-M.Crabtree INTERCEPTED by 21-B.Sanders at IND 37. 21-B.Sanders to SF 34 for 29 yards (62-C.Rachal).

DS: Decent protection, but just a poor throw off the mark. The announcer insisted it was a good throw, but it clearly wasn’t. Crabtree deflects it and it is an easy pick for Bob Sanders.

DZ: Bob Sanders catches picks.  Bethea drops them.  If there is a difference between the two excellent safeties that elevates Sanders to an elite level when healthy, that’s it.  Alex Smith’s play was vastly overrated in this game.  He had some moments, but in general didn’t look that great.  Nice coverage by Hayden who was blanked on Crabtree.

Second Quarter

  1. 3-4-SF 15 (15:00) (Shotgun) 18-P.Manning pass incomplete short right to 44-D.Clark.

DS: Clark lined up at TE right, runs a corner route. Manning floats it out to him. Looks like it is a catchable throw, but Clark is nowhere close to actually making the catch. Weird play which we can chalk up to the sunlight.


  1. 3-10-IND 33 (6:43) (Shotgun) 18-P.Manning pass incomplete deep left to 81-H.Baskett.

DS:  Big third down with Indy trailing by one. Addai picks up the blitz. Manning has time to find Baskett. Unleashes a brilliant throw to a sliding Baskett. For some reason they never replay it on television, but they did at LOS. Ball hit him square in the chest.

DZ:  We are not fine at WR.  I don’t care what anyone says.  Baskett dropped two balls, and Garcon…we’ll get to him.

  1. 2-10-IND 40 (:51) (Shotgun) 11-A.Smith pass short right to 21-F.Gore to IND 25 for 15 yards (58-G.Brackett, 41-A.Bethea). PENALTY on IND-55-C.Session, Roughing the Passer, 13 yards, enforced at IND 25

DS:  Insult to injury. Colts send Session on the blitz, but Smith hits Gore out of the backfield. Nice play by Smith to buy just enough time. Session went low at the legs, which is a mandatory flag. Huge play in this game. Very atypical of the colts to give up a big play and a penalty.

DZ: Great read by Smith on the blitz.  Gore was the perfect outlet.  Brackett had the coverage, but had to respect the TE crossing underneath, that left him a step slow in getting back to his left to cover Gore.  The Session penalty was another idiot “Brady” rule call.  He was stumbling.  There was nothing he could do as he was falling down.  The hit wasn’t late, it was just low.  I hate that rule.  It penalizes players for things they can’t possibly control.

  1. 1-10-IND 39 (:26) (Shotgun) 18-P.Manning pass deep left to 17-A.Collie pushed ob at SF 38 for 23 yards (26-M.Roman).

DS: Collie in the slot to the right. Play action to Addai. Niners drop one lineman back into coverage and blitz two. Addai and CJ pick the blitz nicely. Collie slides all the way across the field to the left. Very tough route to defend. Manning puts it just over the linebacker. Collie gets out of bounds.

DZ: Collie is open because the 49ers blitzed.  They didn’t get home because Joe Addai threw a good block.  Excellent execution.  What is amazing is that to a Colts’ fan :26 is plenty of time for a FG drive.  Insane.

Third Quarter

  1. 3-20-IND 16 (13:31) (Shotgun) 18-P.Manning pass deep right to 85-P.Garcon to IND 48 for 32 yards (36-S.Spencer).

DS:  Garcon is lined up right. Manning fakes the quick throw to Wayne and finds Garcon amongst three defenders on a deep in route. 8 men in coverage on this play. Sick sick play.

DZ:  Demond said to me, “That play is was worth the price of admission”.  Incredible throw just beyond the linebacker.  The 49ers only rush three, so there are tons of people in coverage. Laser rocket throw.  By the way, it was 3rd and 20 because Pollack got blown up for a sack.

  1. 3-4-SF 15 (9:55) 18-P.Manning sacked at SF 22 for -7 yards (91-R.McDonald).

DS: Yet another big third down. Colts need a touchdown. Peyton drops back and pump fakes to Garcon. Pollak gets stormed over. Just a horrific job. They didn’t get much of a hit on Manning, but enough to get him to the ground.

DZ: Pollack allowed two sacks on the drive

  1. 2-10-SF 44 (5:20) (Run formation) 11-A.Smith pass short left to 15-M.Crabtree to SF 46 for 2 yards (25-J.Powers). FUMBLES (25-J.Powers), RECOVERED by IND-25-J.Powers at SF 46. 25-J.Powers to SF 42 for 4 yards (88-I.Bruce). San Francisco challenged the fumble ruling, and the play was Upheld. (Timeout #1 at 05:10.)

DS:  Quick throw to Crabtree in the slot. He slips past Sanders, but is hit simultaneously by Hagler, Powers, and Bethea. It appears that Powers strips him just as Bethea provides the impact. If they could have gotten Bruce blocked it is a touchdown. Interesting that both turnovers involved Crabtree.

DZ:  The quick throw is forced by the blitz.  Then the Colts swarm the ball carrier.  Sandres misses the tackle for a loss, but Crabtree has to make a crazy move to avoid him, and swings the ball out loose.  Then he’s met simultaneously by the law firm of Hagler, Powers, and Bethea.  When you see lots of hats on the ball, good things are going to happen.  Powers has been a season saver considering the injuries to Hayden and Jackson.

  1. 1-10-SF 42 (5:10) 18-P.Manning pass incomplete deep right to 85-P.Garcon.

DS:  Manning goes deep for Garcon who appears to have no idea what route he is running. He moves into the coverage, allowing the defender to get a nice grab. No flag.

DZ:  Bad route.  He’ll learn.  He’s open, but then just drifts and the coverage man catches up to him.  If he had run to the spot where the ball was going to be thrown, it’s 6.  Manning made hand motions after the play indicating he didn’t run the right route, which was obvious on tape.

  1. 3-5-IND 35 (2:39) 18-P.Manning pass short left to 87-R.Wayne to IND 46 for 11 yards (36-S.Spencer). SF-98-P.Haralson was injured during the play

DS:  Manning gets the play off before the defense is set. Throws short to Wayne. Great job by Manning. This time the Colts pick up the big third down.

DZ: This one is for the “why does he let the clock run down?” crowd.  The quick snap might have even been illegal because Addai came off the field, so the 49ers should have been given time to set.  Note the “injured” player after the play.  Indy went to quick snap again, and he just crumpled in front of the official as if someone had shot him.  Bad, bad acting.

Fourth Quarter

  1. 1-10-SF 22 (15:00) 29-J.Addai pass deep left to 87-R.Wayne for 22 yards, TOUCHDOWN. Handoff to J. Addai to the left side.

DS:  Manning hands off to Addai who appears like he is running the stretch. In the stadium I thought he might have a big run going because he appeared to have the corner. Instead he pulls up and throws to a wide open Wayne. A play we’ll remember for a long time.

DZ:  Incredible catch. Incredible call.  We’ll be referencing that for years.

  1. 3-12-IND 35 (11:49) (Shotgun) 11-A.Smith sacked at IND 43 for -8 yards (98-R.Mathis).

DS:  Colts fake the blitz, but instead only send three. Mathis does a great spin move. Smith holds it too long and the result is a huge sack. Smith did well not to fumble.

DZ:  Mathis continues to make plays.  Anytime you get a sack from your DE on a three man rush, it’s a huge play.  It knocked the 49ers out of FG range.

  1. 2-7-IND 13 (10:48) 18-P.Manning pass deep right to 44-D.Clark to SF 47 for 40 yards (38-D.Goldson).

DS: This is one of the biggest plays of the game. The Colts are only up four points and are backed up deep. Play action to Addai. Manning does a great fake and drops way way back. Clark gets wide open from the TE position. He runs an awesome route to the corner that no one is going to be able to cover.

DZ:  It didn’t lead to a score, but it changed the field position at a time when yards mattered.  Clark’s route was an ankle breaker as he faked the cross and cut outside leaving his defender helpless.

  1. 3-10-SF 35 (6:14) (Shotgun) 11-A.Smith sacked at SF 30 for -5 yards (93-D.Freeney).

DS: Smith takes the snap out of the shot gun. Freeney stunts to the inside. Brock forces Smith back into Freeney. 93 cleans up the mess. Great coverage by the Colts on the play in the secondary. The sack streak lives on.

DZ:  Freeney was not 100% in this game.  This was one of the rare times where he benefited from his teammates’ work.  Foster and Mathis get some pressure, and Freeney who had a stunt inside cleans it up.

  1. 3-4-SF 36 (1:58) (Shotgun) 18-P.Manning pass short left to 44-D.Clark to SF 27 for 9 yards (38-D.Goldson).

DS:  Didn’t have this play on tape, but it was brilliant.

DZ:  Shades of 2006 as Manning forces a pass into Clark who snatches it to seal up a crushing drive that prevented the 49ers from seeing the ball again.