INDIANAPOLIS – Last season, 52.2 percent of NFL games were decide by seven points or less.
That's the most of any season in NFL history.
Margin for error in the NFL has never been smaller and it's why Chuck Pagano is ardent in his need for the Colts to cease a reoccurring issue through two weeks of the preseason.
16 total penalties for 176 yards is no recipe for success in the NFL.
It was a message Pagano shared with his team at halftime against Baltimore, following the game and again this week.
"We shot ourselves in the foot," Pagano said of not being able to finish off drives and get off the field versus the Ravens.
"The penalties, it is just unacceptable. That is on me, I have to get that fixed."
In the first half of the Ravens' game, the Colts controlled things from a scrimmage yards standpoint, but could not completely capitalize due to penalties.
- 3rd-and-goal at the Baltimore four-yard line: A false start penalty on running back Robert Turbin took the Colts back to the nine-yard line. Andrew Luck's scramble for three yards meant no touchdown and Adam Vinatieri was coming out for a field goal.
- 4th and 3 at the Baltimore 23-yard line: After an opening drive three-and-out from the defense, the unit could not rest. An illegal formation penalty from rookie Trevor Bates gave Baltimore an automatic first down. Fortunately, the defense dialed up another three-and-out.
- 4th and 18 at the Baltimore 20-yard line: Thanks to the defense holding Baltimore short of a first down for six straight plays, the offense was about to get the ball back. But a 43-yard punt return by rookie Chester Rogers was negated, after a 27-yard holding penalty on Nate Irving.
- 1st and 10 at the Baltimore 44-yard line: A red-zone turnover by the Colts squandered another potential touchdown drive. The Ravens turned it into points thanks to a 41-yard pass interference penalty on undrafted cornerback Darius White really helping the cause.
It was plays like these that had Pagano shaking his head after the Colts' second preseason game.
"We gave ourselves a chance at the end to pull this one out," Pagano said, "but it is just hard to overcome those self-inflicted negatives.
"We have to go to work in cleaning that up."
Highlights from the Colts second preseason game against the Ravens.