INDIANAPOLIS – It's time for AFC South-play to ramp up for the Colts.
Back-to-back divisional road games are waiting for the Colts the next two weeks.
What are the key ingredients to victory, presented by Papa Johns, when the Colts (2-3) take on the Texans (3-2) in Week Six?
1. Turn Down For Watt
-It's a weird feeling for the Colts watching film on the Texans and not seeing J.J. Watt. The league's most disruptive defender is on injured reserve with a back injury. While the Texans defense has maintained a solid level of play without Watt, the unit's numbers have decreased in the two games he has missed.
2. Vontae's Shadow
-We will have to wait until Sunday's first snap for the Houston offense to see just how the Colts want to use Vontae Davis on DeAndre Hopkins. What we do to know is that Davis won't be on Hopkins for every snap. Injuries have once again hit the cornerback position in Indy. Does that factor into how the Colts use Davis on Sunday night?
3. Continuity Coming
-The offensive line in Indy is healthy for a second straight week. That allows for some continuity to occur among the starting group. Last week we saw Denzelle Good at right guard and rookie Joe Haeg at right tackle. If that's the starting alignment again Sunday, the Colts do need more consistent play in protecting Andrew Luck.
4. Hilton's Magic
-We could see very similar attention for T.Y. Hilton on Sunday, like the Colts will have for DeAndre Hopkins. The Ghost has tormented the Texans secondary throughout his career, especially down in Houston. It will be interesting to see how the Texans account for Hilton, given some injuries in the secondary for them.
5. Who's The No. 2 Corner?
-The Colts are pretty healthy this week, outside of the cornerback spot opposite Vonate Davis. Both Patrick Robinson and Darius Butler have missed practice this week. Even though DeAndre Hopkins is the No. 1 wideout in Houston, rookie Will Fuller brings blazing speed to the skill group, too.
6. Gore's Ground Game
-Frank Gore has found some of the most consistent production of his time in Indianapolis over the past few weeks. Gore will try to continue that in Houston, where he had 98 rushing yards last season. The 98 yards for Gore last year against the Texans were the most an Indy running back has had since December 2012.
7. Seize The South
-The top of the AFC South is up for grabs on Sunday night. A win on Sunday for the Colts would tie them with the Texans, but give Chuck Pagano's squad the early tiebreaker over the defending division champs. A loss for the Colts and they would be a full two games back of the Texans and 0-2 in the AFC South to start the season.