Skip to main content

Colts At A Loss For Words After Not Getting The Job Done In Jacksonville

Struggling to come up with the right words, the Indianapolis Colts reflected on an embarrassing loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars, ending a promising season. (Video via Indianapolis Colts' YouTube)

Heading into Sunday's regular season finale against the worst team in the NFL in the Jacksonville Jaguars, the Indianapolis Colts were feeling confident, knowing that they controlled their own destiny and just needed to win to get into the AFC playoffs for the second season in a row. 

Instead, the Colts came out flat on both sides of the ball, failed to avoid the back-breaking turnovers, and simply weren't able to match the intensity from the Jaguars, resulting in an embarrassing 26-11 loss, ending what was once a promising season in frustrating fashion. 

As expected after such a tough loss, Colts players and coaches were at a loss for words in a solemn environment, knowing that they failed to truly control their own destiny, coming up short on the biggest of stages.

Indianapolis Colts safety Khari Willis (37) and cornerback Kenny Moore II (23) show frustration late in the fourth quarter of the game on Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022, at TIAA Bank Field in Jacksonville, Fla. The Colts lost to the Jaguars, 11-26. The Indianapolis Colts Versus Jacksonville Jaguars On Sunday Jan 9 2022 Tiaa Bank Field In Jacksonville Fla

"I don't know. That's what I just said in the locker room was, you know, I don't have that answer right now. I don't have that answer right now. Got to reflect on that," Colts' head coach Frank Reich said to reporters, according to video via Colts.com. "What I said in there was, you know, just learn, and grow from – how we started the way we started. It was out of our hands. We fought and scratched and clawed to get it back in our hands. And then last two weeks of the season, we did what we did. Starts with me as the head coach. And we've got to figure out how we can close this season out the right way; how we can coach better, how we can play better. You know, we had the opportunity by control of our own destiny and just didn't get it done."

Knowing that the Colts controlled their own destiny in the final two weeks and proceeded to fail to pick up a win against the Las Vegas Raiders and Jaguars in frustrating fashion is a really tough pill to swallow. 

There's no real excuses from the leaders of the team though, including the likes of center Ryan Kelly and linebacker Darius Leonard. Kelly, who has dealt with a ton of adversity this season, summed it up pretty accurately following the 15-point loss Sunday, stating the Colts are simply beat, though the outcome still hurts the same.

Indianapolis Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton (13) looks to the scoreboard late in the fourth quarter of the game on Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022, at TIAA Bank Field in Jacksonville, Fla. The Colts lost to the Jaguars, 11-26. The Indianapolis Colts Versus Jacksonville Jaguars On Sunday Jan 9 2022 Tiaa Bank Field In Jacksonville Fla

"I think we can only look at ourselves for that, you know. We certainly have the talent. We have the leadership in the room to do it, in every room. We just didn't do it," Kelly said to reporters Sunday, according to video via Colts.com. "And I'm sure that will be speculated on, and we'll look at everything that we can look at to figure it out. But I think, ultimately, we just got beat today. We got beat against the Raiders. So as hard as that is to say after some of the big, the monster wins that we've had, for a season to end this way after all that we've gone through, where we started off at and digging ourselves such a big hole and to climb out of that, to get back on top and top of the Wild Card in the AFC to mess up the last two games, it hurts, man. So I don't know."

Read More

Arguably the most emotional player following the game was Leonard, which shouldn't surprise anyone considering the level of emotion he plays with on a down by down basis. Following the loss to the Jaguars, there was noticeable emotion missing from Leonard, who simply couldn't believe that such a promising season came to a screeching halt in the manner that it did.

Despite the tough loss, Leonard was able to reflect with his teammates,  talking about how the men in the locker room made him a better player and person this season, which was trying for the Colts' star linebacker right from the start of the season due to off-season ankle surgery. 

Indianapolis Colts head coach Frank Reich leaves the field after losing to the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022, at TIAA Bank Field in Jacksonville, Fla. The Colts lost 11-26. The Indianapolis Colts Versus Jacksonville Jaguars On Sunday Jan 9 2022 Tiaa Bank Field In Jacksonville Fla

"[I was] just heartbroken, same thing I told them. I thanked those guys for helping me be a better man, helping me be a better leader," Leonard said to reporters Sunday, according to video via Colts.com. "I flat out just told them just all the things that I've been through, my ups and my downs this season. This season's been by far one of the toughest seasons for me dealing with off the field issues, you know, just nonsense stuff that I have to deal with, then the ankle. Then, just putting it all on the line and having it end the way that it did, that just hurts me the most. I'm a true competitor, ultimate competitor. For them to come out and do what they did against us, and in my mind, we were the better team, and today, we didn't show that. 

"Now we're sitting here where we're sitting," Leonard added. "It just sucks. I told the guys that no matter what, I've got their back no matter what. It's going to hurt. We're going to sit here. We're going to soak this in and then hopefully we just use it, use is at fuel."

Based on how some of the leaders on the Colts reacted following the loss, you can count on the off-season being filled with fuel from Sunday's disastrous performance, which should help Reich's charges bounce back in a big way in 2022. 

Have thoughts on the Colts' loss to the Jaguars? Drop a line in the comments section below letting us know how you feel! 


Follow Josh on Twitter @ByJoshCarney.

Follow Horseshoe Huddle on Twitter and Facebook.