PASSING OFFENSE: A-plus
QB Peyton Manning completed 80 percent of his passes, hitting on 28 of 35 for 311 yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions. Backup QB Jim Sorgi connected on 3 of 5 passes for an additional 29 yards. WR Reggie Wayne hauled in 10 passes for 143 yards and a touchdown. TE Dallas Clark had six catches for 60 yards and two TDs. Manning and Sorgi spread the ball around to eight different receivers. Manning was sacked just once and was pressured only two other times.
RUSHING OFFENSE: A-minus
While the Colts didn't have huge numbers on the ground, they were certainly respectable. RB Joseph Addai started and saw limited playing time, rushing for 26 yards and a touchdown in six carries.
Backup RB Kenton Keith got the bulk of the work and had 60 yards in 10 carries. Rookie RB Clifton Dawson got his first extensive playing time of the season and added 21 yards in 10 carries and scored his first NFL touchdown. Even TE Dallas Clark got in on the act, picking up 15 yards on a fourth-down reverse.
PASS DEFENSE: B-plus
Indianapolis picked off three passes and registered four quarterback pressures against Houston QB Sage Rosenfels. The Colts also broke up eight passes. S Bob Sanders, S Matt Giordano and rookie S Melvin Bullitt registered the interceptions — it was the first of Bullitt's career.
Yes, Rosenfels hit on 22 of 36 passes for 233 yards and two touchdowns. The first touchdown pass came on the Texans' first offensive drive and the last occurred on their last possession.
RUSH DEFENSE: B-plus
Darius Walker went the entire way at running back for Houston after Ron Dayne was scratched because of an ankle injury. Walker was limited to 66 yards in 19 carries, 52 of those yards coming in the first half. Not a bad effort by the Colts' run defense considering that three defensive ends and one defensive tackle missed the game with injuries.
SPECIAL TEAMS: B
Kickoff coverage continues to be the Colts' Achilles' heel. Houston returned seven kickoffs for an average of 26.6 yards. Andre Davis had six kickoff returns for a 27.5-yard average. Punt returner Jacoby Jones had one return for 12 yards.
For Indianapolis, KR-PR T.J. Rushing had two fair caches on punt returns and one kickoff return for 13 yards. P Hunter Smith averaged 35 yards, 29 net, on two punts. He had one downed inside the Texans' 20-yard line. PK Adam Vinatieri hit on his only field goal attempt, connecting from 29 yards.
It's been a tough year for injuries to key players this season. The Colts' coaching staff has been forced to mix and match position-by-position, coaching up lesser-known players who have primarily been backups for most of their NFL careers. If there is an MVP for Indianapolis this year, it's the bench players. And a lot of the credit for their success has to go to Tony Dungy and his group of assistant coaches.