Jeff Saturday is 1-0 as an NFL head coach.
Colts wide receiver Parris Campbell turned a short Matt Ryan pass into a 35-yard touchdown with five minutes left in the game to stake the Colts to a 25-20 lead. The Raiders were able to drive the ball into the red zone, but a fourth down pass to wide receiver Davante Adams in the end zone was knocked away by cornerback Stephon Gilmore.
The win leaves the Colts 4-5-1 on the season and they will host the Eagles next Sunday. The win will make Colts owner Jim Irsay happy after he insisted the decision to hire the inexperienced Saturday to replace Frank Reich wasn’t because the Colts are tanking the rest of the season.
Raiders owner Mark Davis is unlikely to be quite as enthusiastic. The Raiders are now 2-7 under head coach Josh McDaniels and there’s been so little to like about the team’s performance this season that there’s already thoughts that McDaniels could be on the hot seat. Losing to a team that just went through the week the Colts went through won’t do anything to change that perception.
Adams had a big day with nine catches for 126 yards and a touchdown, but the Raiders started slowly on both sides of the ball and allowed the Colts to go 152 yards on seven plays on their two second half touchdown drives. They also committed 10 penalties as they continue to be one of 2022’s biggest disappointments. They’ll face another one in Denver next weekend.
Ryan’s return to the lineup after Sam Ehlinger started the last two games resulted in some highlights, including a 39-yard run that set up Campbell’s touchdown catch. It was the longest run of Ryan’s NFL career and went for more yards than his previous career high for rushing yards in a game. Ryan also ran for a one-yard touchdown and went 21-of-28 for 222 yards.
Having Taylor back from his ankle injury helped a lot as well. He broke free for a 66-yard score and ran 22 times for 147 yards overall. Watching Ryan and Taylor on Sunday makes one wonder why things went so wrong for the offense under Reich earlier this season because things looked pretty good most of the day on Sunday.
Looking back is pretty much a moot point for the Colts now, however, and they’ll be hoping this outing is one they can repeat against tougher foes in the weeks to come.