Who says defense wins championships? The Washington Redskins own the NFL’s worst defensive unit as they are giving up 410.2 yards per contest, yet they sit atop the highly contested NFC East. The Indianapolis Colts are still seeking to find their identity this season, are the an offensive powerhouse as in years past or are they more of a defensive force that gives their offense a chance in every game? The (3-2) Indianapolis Colts travel to FedEx Field in Maryland for a Sunday night affair with the upbeat (3-2) Washington Redskins, kickoff slated for 8:20 PM EST. All eyes will be on QB Peyton Manning as he has not been himself this year and needs a strong outing to reassert himself as the premier passing threat in the league. The Colts haven’t won in five visits to Washington since Oct. 29, 1967, when the franchise was located in Baltimore.
The Indianapolis Colts are coming off of a surprisingly tough and heated affair with the Kansas City Chiefs, the game hung in the balance until late in the game when the Colts finally prevailed 19-9. The Colts offense was stymied by an aggressive Chiefs defensive pursuit, QB Peyton Manning was rattled several times from blitzing Chiefs corners and safetys. The Colts have yet to put forth their best effort this season but there is ample reason to believe that it’s on the way. The Chiefs defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel, who knows how to slow the Colts down, devised a game plan that put the ball in the hands of the running back. This worked extremely well for Kansas City as both RB Joseph Addai and Donald Brown were hampered by injury and so RB Mike Hart was the one who had to step up, and so he did. Hart scored on an 11 yard scamper that sealed the victory for the Colts late in the fourth quarter. The Indianapolis Colts still are looking to solve their defensive front woes, Indianapolis ranks 29th in the NFL in rush defense. The Colts will be limping into Sundays contest as they have a contingent of injured troops. The AFC South is once again competitive as all three teams are bunched at 3-2, the Colts need a win Sunday night to avoid being .500 after 6 games for the first time in 9 years.
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The Redskins pulled out a heart racing win over Green Bay last Sunday in overtime, the skins had to rely on a missed field goal by the Packers to even enter into the overtime period. Washington was able to devise a game plan that hindered Packers QB Aaron Rodgers from fully opening up his offense. Now this week, they will have to deal with a Colts offense that is every bit lethal as in recent years and ranks 3rd in total offense. McNabb will receive a small break, however, as it seems the Colts will be without their defensive captain, linebacker Gary Brackett. The Redskins feature a pair of good pass-catching tight ends, Chris Cooley and Fred Davis, making Brackett’s absence especially tough for the Colts to handle. Washington has injury problems of its own.
Clinton Portis is out at least a month with a groin injury, and his replacement Ryan Torain will hope to break out Sunday after a 16-carry, 40-yard performance last week. Both of their offensive tackles are not 100%, which is a problem when facing Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis. Beyond that, linebacker Rocky McIntosh is recovering from a concussion and may miss the contest, which further thins a position where the Redskins don’t have much depth. The Redskins have the 30th-ranked pass defense, they will need to address this before Sunday as Manning is the best at picking on a weak defensive secondary.
Colts vs Redskins Spread, Line and Betting Odds:
Indianapolis Colts -3
@ Washington Redskins +3
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Colts vs Redskins Prediction for Week 6:
Spread Prediction (TOP PLAY) – The Redskins have problems defending against the pass and with Peyton Manning coming to town the issue cannot be avoided for another week. The skins rank 30th in defending the pass, the Colts offense will find their spots on Sunday night and should be able to put up some points. The Colts know Redskins coach Mike Shannahan very well from his previous years in Denver, so they are not coming into this out of conference game blindfolded. Indianapolis is 6-0 ATS in a road game where the total is between 42.5 and 45 points over the last 3 seasons. The Colts are also on a six game winning streak against NFC opponents dating back to last year. The Redskins do not possess a fearsome home field advantage; Washington is 5-11-1 ATS in its last 17 games at home. I do not believe QB Donovan McNabb is the type of quarterback capable of entering into a shootout with Peyton Manning, so unless the skins defense can finally show up I believe we are looking at an easy victory for the Colts. We will consider the Colts leaving the state of Maryland with four wins on the season.
Game Total Prediction – The Colts have not played against a weak defensive opponent this year and they finally get their chance to truly open things up this Sunday night. The total has gone OVER in 8 of Indianapolis’s last 12 games and the total has gone OVER in 5 of Indianapolis’s last 6 games on the road. The Redskins are no slouch either on offense and they should get their chances against a suspect Colts defense, the total has gone OVER in 10 of Washington’s last 15 games. The seldom times these two teams hook up the scoreboards are lit up. The total has gone OVER in 6 of Washington’s last 7 games when playing Indianapolis. I recommend taking a look at the OVER in this primetime matchup of 3-2 hopefuls. Cheers!