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Colts' Defensive Front Seven Recognized By Pro Football Focus For Efforts In Week 16

The Indianapolis Colts' defense kept New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley in check on Sunday, helping them come back to win, 28-27. A couple of Colts defensive linemen graded out well according to Pro Football Focus' positional grades.


INDIANAPOLIS — It wasn't pretty. In fact, it took some fiery speeches in the locker room at halftime, but the Indianapolis Colts were able to pull out the win over the New York Giants at Lucas Oil Stadium on Sunday, 28-27.

Aside from the win, arguably the Colts' biggest accomplishment in the game was containing Pro Bowl rookie running back Saquon Barkley, who totaled 77 total yards and a touchdown on 26 touches.

As may be expected, a pair of Colts defensive linemen who helped keep Barkley in check, as well as the Colts trigger man who led the comeback win and the ballhawking safety who iced the game for them all graded well according to Pro Football Focus' Week 16 positional grades.

Andrew Luck

Quarterback No. 8 (82.6), 67 snaps (100 percent)

On the way to the 21st game-winning drive of his career, Luck put together yet another impressive performance. He went 31-of-47 passing (66.0 percent) for 357 yards (7.6 YPA), two touchdowns and an interception for a 94.0 passer rating. He also kicked in two carries for 13 yards.

Down 17-7 at haltime, Luck and the Colts offense flipped a switch coming back out of the locker room. In the second half, Luck was 16-of-23 passing (69.6 percent) for 214 yards (9.3 YPA), two touchdowns, no interceptions for a passer rating of 128.1.

With six completions, Luck surpassed his previous single-season career high of 380, now sitting at 406 completions for the season. He also passed Andy Dalton (167) for the sixth-most passing touchdowns in a player's first seven seasons in NFL history.

Margus Hunt

Defensive Lineman No. 8 (82.4), 52 snaps (80 percent)

Although he was credited with just one tackle, Hunt found ways to affect the game without having to put up numbers in the box score.

He lined up everywhere along the defensive line — 27 snaps at right tackle, 16 at left tackle, seven at left end and two at right end — and helped close run lanes and push teammates toward the ball.

In the passing game, he totaled four quarterback pressures (three hurries and a hit). On his one hit, he bull rushed his blocker into Giants quarterback Eli Manning and pulled them both down to the ground.

Hassan Ridgeway

Defensive Lineman No. 9 (82.3), 15 snaps (23 percent)

The third-year pro has had to wait his turn this season, playing in just his fourth game of the season on Sunday, but he's been impressive whenever given the chance as he builds off of his dominant preseason.

Against the Giants, Ridgeway had two tackles — one of which considered a "stop," which constitutes a "loss" for the offense — as well as one quarterback hurry. It was his highest-graded game of the year, by far.

In keeping Barkley to just 43 rushing yards, the Colts are one of only three teams to not allow a 100-yard rusher so far this season.

Malik Hooker

Safety No. 4 (81.5), 65 snaps (100 percent)

Some people outside the organization have questioned Hooker's impact this season after he hasn't piled up the big highlight plays in 2018 like he did as a rookie in 2017. In the Colts' new defense, Hooker isn't being tested as much downfield, leading to fewer opportunities to make those highlight-reel interceptions.

However, Hooker gave the people what they wanted on Sunday when he intercepted a misguided Manning pass — his second of the season — to seal the win for the Colts. On the day, Hooker also had six tackles.

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