Andrew Luck and the Indianapolis Colts are looking to continue to rise up the AFC ranks. Andy Dalton and the Cincinnati Bengals are looking for a playoff victory. The 11-5 Colts will host the 10-5-1 Bengals in a rematch from a meeting back in October, with the Colts winning 27-0. In that game, the Colts held the Bengals to just 32 rushing yards. In the AFC Wild Card game, the Bengals will look to rely on the run a little more behind Jeremy Hill as star wide receiver AJ Green is out with a concussion. Hill had a monster rookie season rushing for 1,124 yards and nine touchdowns. Look for him to get a heavy work load against Indy. Cincy will be looking for revenge from the October encounter.
The Colts have virtually no rushing game, so the game plan will see Luck doing a lot of dropping back and passing. On the season, Luck has thrown for 4,761 yards, 40 touchdowns and 16 interceptions. His favorite target is T.Y. Hilton, who has caught 82 passes for 1,345 yards and seven touchdowns. If the two can connect early and often, the Colts will be in good shape. Indianapolis will look to avoid a huge hole they got themselves in last season, but eventually overcame to beat the Chiefs.
Both starting quarterbacks will look to make a name for themselves in the playoffs. Dalton has never won a playoff game and hasn’t always looked the best. Dalton is 0-3 in the playoffs, but the Bengals have made the postseason each of his four years. Dalton will look to get his first playoff victory and the Bengals’ first playoff victory since 1990. Luck was put into the position of replacing Peyton Manning and has done a nice job thus far, until the playoffs. He is 1-2 in the playoffs with 8 touchdowns and 6 interceptions. Will the Bengals be able to pull out the victory or will the Colts continue to make strides to becoming one of the NFL’s best teams?