SEATTLE —The Indianapolis Colts fell to 1-3 on the season Sunday night with a 46-18 loss to the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field.
The Colts actually had a very strong first half, heading into the break after the first 30 minutes with a 15-10 lead.
]()The second half — particularly the third quarter — was a whole different story, however.
Seattle would outscore Indianapolis 22-3 coming out of halftime, and cruised from there in an all-around dominant effort.
"In the first half we did what we needed to do to start the game, but you have to play 60 minutes," Colts head coach Chuck Pagano said. "You can't come out in the second half and do the things to hurt yourself that we did. We had turnovers, penalties, communication breakdowns and gave up big plays with protection issues. They just out played us big time in the second half. We did not do a good job of adjusting, it's on me. We are a lot better than that."
Here are the FIVE THINGS LEARNEDfrom Sunday's loss to the Seahawks:
• TALE OF TWO HALFS:The game didn't start as planned for the Colts, who saw center Deyshawn Bond get carted off the field with what was reported as a knee injury after just the second play of the game. The outlook became even murkier early in the second quarter, when Seattle cornerback Justin Coleman picked off a Jacoby Brissett pass and returned it 28 yards for a touchdown. But Indianapolis would settle in from there, going on a 13-0 run in the final 12:32 of the half to take a 15-10 lead into the locker room, making plays on defense (Matthias Farley with an interception) and on offense (impressive 18-yard touchdown pass on a perfectly-placed bullet from Brissett to Donte Moncrief). The second half — not so much. Indianapolis had 32 yards and three first downs in the final two quarters on offense, while defensively, the Colts allowed four touchdown drives — each of which was 74 yards or more — and 36 total points in the second half, a Seahawks franchise record. This is the third straight week the Colts have taken a lead into the second half, only to either lose that lead (Arizona Cardinals and Seahawks games) or barely hang on for the win (Cleveland Browns game).
• 'THE 12s:'One of the major storylines heading into the game was how big of a factor the Seattle home crowd — or, the "12s," as they're known — was expected to be in a primetime matchup on Sunday Night Football. The Seahawks claim their raucous atmosphere at CenturyLink Field helps cause more false start penalties than any other home stadium in the NFL, and when the opposing team is on offense, it can be quite difficult to find ways to simply communicate through all the noise. For the most part, however, the Colts weren't too affected by the Seattle crowd on Sunday night, save for one drive in the first quarter, when Adam Redmond, filling in for the injured Bond at center, was called for two false start penalties. Though the crowd wasn't going to be much of a factor as the Seahawks continued building on their lead in the second half, the Colts did a pretty good job clearing that specific point of emphasis.
• GIVETH, TAKETH: **The Colts' defense continues to show promising signs in the takeaways column, as they earned two of them, both interceptions, on Sunday night. But Indy also had two turnovers of its own, both of which were returned for touchdowns, to cancel out that potential theme. Safeties Farley and Malik Hooker each had timely picks for the Colts in the contest, with Farley's leading to the touchdown pass to Moncrief to go into halftime with the five-point lead, and Hooker's leading to an Adam Vinatieri field goal that temporarily tied the game at 18-all with 4:53 left in the third quarter. The Colts now have six interceptions this season through four games after grabbing just eight total picks all of last year. But the Seahawks' takeaways on Sunday, particularly their second one, seemed to have more impact. Just 10 seconds after a 30-yard touchdown run by J.D. McKissic to put the home team up 25-18 with 2:12 left in the third quarter, the Seahawks were back in the end zone, thanks to a strip sack on Brissett by defensive end Marcus Smith, which was recovered by linebacker Bobby Wagner and returned 21 yards for the score. At that point, Seattle took a 32-18 lead and wouldn't look back.
• HIGH PRESSURE:Much like the rest of the team, the Colts' offensive line turned in an impressive first half on Sunday before the Seahawks were able to break through and flex their muscles in the second half. In the first two quarters, Brissett, for the most part, had plenty of time to operate in the pocket, and he completed 14-of-20 passes for 142 yards with a touchdown and an interception each, and he was not sacked — or even officially hit. But the final two quarters were a completely different tale. Brissett was constantly under pressure in the second half, including one fourth quarter drive in which he was knocked to the ground on three straight plays, the last of which resulted in a sack and a loss of 14 yards on third down. Brissett was slow to get up off the turf after that last hit, but was able to slowly jog off the field to the sideline. In all, the Seahawks had three sacks and 11 hits combined in the third and fourth quarters.
• POINTS OF INTEREST:Here are some Indy milestone nuggets from Sunday's game, courtesy of Colts PR:
— With Robert Turbin's second quarter rushing touchdown, the Colts have now recorded a rushing score in seven consecutive games, which is the longest streak for the team dating back to Dec. 31, 2006 – Nov. 4, 2007 (nine straight games).
— With 12 carries, running back Frank Gore passed Marcus Allen (3,022) for the eighth most rushes in NFL history.
— Cornerback Nate Hairston's safety was the team's first dating back to Dec. 27, 2015, in a win against Miami.
— With his third quarter interception, Hooker became the first Colts rookie to intercept at least one pass in three consecutive games dating back to 1984 when Eugene Daniel accomplished the feat from Weeks 13-15.
— After converting his second quarter PAT, Vinatieri has now tallied at least one point in 46 different stadiums. Sunday night's game at CenturyLink Field was his first career game in Seattle.