The Indianapolis Colts had a tall task ahead of them on Sunday, and they were up for the challenge.
Coming into the game as seven-point underdogs on the road against the Buffalo Bills, the Colts completely smothered the hosts, beating the Bills down by a score of 41-15.
Here are some of my main observations from the lopsided victory.
—Wow, Jonathan Taylor. The Colts' second-year running back has officially entered the MVP race and made a midseason case for NFL Offensive Player of the Year. The Bills defense entered the game ranking third in the NFL against the run in yards per game allowed (83.9 avg.) and yards per carry (3.8 avg.) and were tied for the eighth-fewest touchdown runs allowed (7). Taylor carried the ball a season-high 32 times for 185 yards (5.8 avg.) and 4 touchdowns to go with 3 receptions for 19 yards and another touchdown. His five scores are a Colts' single-game franchise record. Taylor is now comfortably atop the NFL in rushing with 1,122 yards.
—Frank Reich, Matt Eberflus call a heck of a game. From the very onset, the Colts were in control. Offensively, they mixed the run and pass quite well early on. They found what was going to work (Taylor running the ball) and stuck with it, and they didn't blow things in the second half by going flat after grabbing a wide lead. We've seen that come back to bite them this season amongst other close calls. The Colts also went 8-of-12 on third down (66.7%) and 4-of-6 in the red zone (66.7%), which are two areas where they struggle to perform consistently well. On the defensive side of the ball, they were able to get some pressure on Bills quarterback Josh Allen. They only got to him for one sack but they routinely made him move his feet and forced some bad passes. Overall, they won the turnover battle 4-0, taking the NFL lead in turnover differential from the Bills, who'd been the only team leading them throughout the season.
—Kwity Paye continues making plays. Over the last three weeks, Colts rookie Kwity Paye was second in the NFL in pressures on the quarterback with 19, and tops in the league the last two weeks with 16. On Sunday against Buffalo, he got his first-career strip-sack and his second sack overall. So far, the Colts' first-round pick is paying off.
—Kenny Moore II does it again. The Colts' top cornerback continued looking like the best slot defender in the NFL on Sunday after adding 3 tackles, 1 pass breakup, and his team-leading third interception of the season. The takeaway was quite a heads-up play from Moore, who first attempted to swat the ball away from the Bills' Emmanuel Sanders before picking the ball out of the air himself.
What were your biggest takeaways from Sunday? Drop your thoughts below in the comment section!