Following a 35-3 dismantling of the lowly Cincinnati Bengals, it’s clear the Colts are back in business.

Joseph Addai will need to wake up for the Colts to be a force this postseason.

Joseph Addai will need to wake up if the Colts want to be a force this postseason.

With a mulligan in their pocket – the Colts can lose another game and would still secure a playoff berth – it appears they are headed for their sixth consecutive playoff appearance.

While things are going well for the Colts, the team’s inability to run the ball cannot be overlooked.

As the postseason approaches and the weather worsens, the Colts running game can’t get it together and is currently ranked 31st in the NFL- ahead of only the Cardinals.

Over the past two weeks, the Colts have faced two of the league’s worst run defenses and found little success – combining for 147 rushing yards at 3.0 yards per carry in those two games.

While Peyton Manning picked apart the Bengals’ defense, the Colts running game was stagnant.

Despite the lack of a running game, nobody seems worried.
“It’s all about trying to find a way to get into the endzone whether you’re going to run it, drop back and pass, or do play action,” Manning said.

Head coach Tony Dungy echoed Manning’s sentiments.

“We’re not overly concerned,” Dungy said. “We just want to move the ball and score points. We didn’t score points last week. That was the thing we were concerned about, not the running game or the passing game. If we don’t turn the ball over and score points, it really doesn’t matter to us how we get them.”

This season, the Colts average 78.1 rushing yards per game. Five times, they’ve run for less than 60 yards and only once has a Colts’ running back cracked the 100-yard mark.

Luckily for the Colts, resurrecting a running game come playoff time isn’t impossible.

Two recent Super Bowl Champions – the Patriots in 2004 and the Buccaneers in 2003 – had significant postseason turnarounds in their running games.

Both teams ranked 27th in rushing during the regular season of their eventual Super Bowl campaigns. The Patriots went on to average 111.7 yards rushing per game in the postseason, while the Buccaneers upped their number to 106.7 rushing yards per game during their playoff run.

The Colts have first-hand experience in revving up a running game during the postseason.

En route to winning Super Bowl X, the Colts ranked 18th in rushing during the regular season, but averaged a whopping 151 yards per game during the postseason.

With an offensive line that has replaced two starting guards and a running back – Joseph Addai – that’s been banged up all season, it’s not going to be easy for the Colts to find a way to get the running game going.

“We’re just a little bit off,” Dungy said. “We just need to keep running our plays and keep going, keep working on it. We’ll have a couple more weeks to see if we can improve it.”

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