“This is our time. We’ve got to make it happen!”
Those words were said by Colts All-Pro Center Jeff Saturday on the eve of the AFC Championship Game against the Patriots. The 2006 World Champion Colts are a great story. Their run defense during the regular season was much maligned. In fact, that defense allowed 5.33 rushing yards per carry during the regular season, the most since the NFL-AFL merger in the late 1960’s. The Colts were able to finish the regular season 12-4 on the strength of Peyton Manning and the offense. In 2005, the Colts had, what most people felt, their best-ever team in their years in Indianapolis. They went 14-2 only to be beaten by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the playoffs.
The 2003 and 2004 Colts also had very good regular seasons only to be defeated each year by the Patriots in the playoffs. The 2006 Colts started their incredible post-season run with a 23-8 win against Kansas City. Then came a 15-6 victory over Baltimore. That”weak” defense got Bob Sanders back from injury and rose to to the occasion. Then in that incredible AFC Conference Championship Game against the Patriots, the Colts overcame a 21-3 deficit and won 38-34, in what I think was the greatest sporting event the City of Indianapolis ever has had. The Colts took charge in the Super Bowl and defeated the Bears 29-17. With all those problems with the defense, who would have believed the Colts would have won the Super Bowl! The beauty of sports: Unpredictability!