INDIANAPOLIS – With the Super Bowl Champs from the 2006 season in the building Sunday, the Colts will try to welcome them back in a winning way.
The Colts (4-5) and Titans (5-5) will oppose each other in a pivotal AFC South tilt with the stretch run of the season alive and well.
What are the key ingredients to victory, presented by Papa Johns, when the Colts (4-5) take on the Titans (5-5) in Week 11?
1. Defend Your Own
-At the start of 2016, Jim Irsay preached how important it was for the Colts to control their homefield. Through half of the season, the Colts are just 2-2 inside of Lucas Oil Stadium. For the Colts to have a realistic shot at winning the AFC South this season, they will likely have to win their final four home games with a couple of difficult road matchups still on the slate.
2. "Must Win" Urgency
-When the Colts have faced "must win" type games in 2016, they've answered that call. Can the Colts now string wins together when the games aren't truly in the "must get" category? That's the next step as the Colts search for their first winning streak of the season.
3. Play Gap Sound
-The Tennessee Titans bring a bunch of different looks within their running game. From personnel groupings, to a variety in formations, the Titans go about running the football in several ways. That adds to the importance in the Colts staying disciplined within their defensive structure and the responsibility that comes in each gap.
4. Offense Clicking?
-It's the healthiest the offense has been since the start of 2016. The skill group is intact. The line is really healthy. Andrew Luck is guiding an attack that was clicking at a very high level the last time the Colts played. For the Colts to rattle off a few wins in a row down the stretch, this unit has to do the heavy lifting.
5. Keep Tennessee Doubting
-It's crazy to think the Titans have never beaten the Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium. Andrew Luck has never lost to the Titans. And the Colts have won 15 of 16 over their divisional foes from Tennessee. Is it a mental hurdle for the Titans? That's why, if the Colts can get off to an early lead on Sunday, you might get those doubts to start creeping into the heads on the visiting sideline.
6. Tiebreakers Needed
-The Colts are still a ways away from the tiebreakers truly mattering in 2016. But they can't be ignored. With the Colts dropping two divisional games already this year, that has only added to how crucial the final three AFC South contests are for Indianapolis. Yes, the record has to improve for tiebreakers to mean something, but the Colts also need these home divisional wins for the possibility of ties within the division coming at the end of the regular season.
7. Quick Turnaround
-A very healthy roster exits the bye week for the Colts. That's good news especially with the Thursday night game in 2016 coming next week. The Colts will welcome the Steelers to Lucas Oil Stadium on Thanksgiving night. After that the Colts will have a mini bye before playing on Monday Night Football against the Jets on 12/5.