Up next: Colts already 3-0 against NFC West

The Indianapolis Colts' 42-6 victory Sunday over the winless St. Louis Rams wasn't the Colts' best effort of the season. Far from it. But it was good enough for the Colts to remain one of the NFL's unbeaten teams.

A few too many dropped passes. Untimely penalties (six in all for 51 yards). Injuries to several key players -- rookie running back Donald Brown (strained shoulder), wide receiver Reggie Wayne (strained groin) and cornerback Kelvin Hayden (neck sprain) -- although none initially appeared to be serious.

Throw in a spotty run defense and it should give Jim Caldwell and his coaching staff more than enough things to talk about during team film review.

Despite the rough spots, Caldwell prefers to talk about the good things that he saw in the win.

"We certainly feel that we played pretty well. Obviously, we had some rough spots there in the game a little bit. But the great thing about it is that these guys prepare well. They practice hard. They play hard. And it shows," he said.

"I think that it showed today. The other great thing (about the win over the Rams) is that (Indianapolis' players) will take this and celebrate for a short period of time and get right back to work."

The Colts improved to 6-0 and now have won 15 straight regular-season games dating back to last season.

"You never know how it's going to be," tight end Dallas Clark said. "Last year, we definitely didn't start out like this. It's a good thing, but we haven't accomplished anything. We have to improve each week and keep getting better."

Indianapolis, 3-0 against the NFC West this season, will get a chance to enjoy three straight home games, starting with Sunday's matchup with the San Francisco 49ers.

"The good thing about (the win over the Rams) is that we have a lot of room to improve. We have a lot of work to do, but that is what (life in the NFL) is all about," Caldwell said.

TRENDING: The Colts picked up 156 yards on the ground thanks to the combined play of running backs Joseph Addai (64 yards on 20 carries), Chad Simpson (35 yards on three rushing attempts highlighted by a 31-yard touchdown run late in the fourth quarter), and rookie Donald Brown (58 yards on two carries, including a 45-yard run in the second quarter that set up the Colts' second touchdown of the day). "We ran the ball decently. We were able to move the ball when we had the opportunities," Caldwell said. "We did get stalled a couple of times."

LINEUP WATCH: Veteran cornerback Kelvin Hayden returned to the Indianapolis lineup since reinjuring a sore hamstring at Miami in the second week of the season and had one of the Colts' two interceptions Sunday. Hayden's status for this week's game with San Francisco, though, is up in the air after he suffered a sprained neck in the fourth quarter. "The neck feels all right. I got a little stinger, but it is what it is," he said.

PLAYER/PERSONNEL NOTES

--- WR Reggie Wayne had six catches for 76 yards and a touchdown before he left the game in the second quarter with a strained groin. He returned in the third quarter and finished with seven catches for 83 yards. His availability for the 49ers game won't be known until the middle of the week.

--- RB Donald Brown had a career-long 45 yard run in the second quarter before he suffered a sprained shoulder. He did not return, and there were no updates on his availability for this week's home game with the 49ers after the game.

--- CB Jacob Lacey, an undrafted rookie free agent from Oklahoma State, recorded his first career interception and first career touchdown when he picked off a Marc Bulger pass late in the third quarter and returned it 35 yards for the score.

--- WR Hank Baskett made his first catch, a 5-yarder in the fourth quarter, for the Colts. Baskett signed with Indianapolis earlier in the season but had seen limited playing time.

--- S Bob Sanders (knee) made his first start of the season Sunday and saw limited playing time. He had one tackle, bringing down Rams RB Steven Jackson.

--- CB Kelvin Hayden (hamstring) made his first start since the Miami game in Week 2. Hayden suffered a neck sprain in the fourth quarter and did not return. His status for the 49ers game won't be known until later this week.

--- PK Matt Stover played in his first game for the Colts. Stover did not attempt a field goal but was 6-for-6 in extra-points.


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