The Cincinnati Bengals spoiled Andrew Luck’s return as they defeated the Colts 34-23 on Sunday. Here are the biggest takeaways from Sunday’s game.
Biggest Takeaways for the Bengals:
The main takeaway for the Bengals is that their offense looked very balanced especially with starting running back Joe Mixon leading the way. Mixon was impressive as he led the Bengals with 95 yards and a rushing touchdown. He also added another 54 receiving yards which was kind of surprising to see him play that kind of a role. However, Mixon proved that he is ready to be the lead back for Cincinnati and he gives the team a much-needed threat on offense. Another takeaway from this game for the Bengals is the solid -performance from quarterback Andy Dalton. Sure, the Colts defense isn’t exactly good, but it was still encouraging for Dalton to play well in the season opener. He did make one mistake by throwing an interception, but he overall played at a very high level. If Dalton can play like this and Mixon can add some balance in the running game then Cincinnati could have a very good offense. The Bengals still have some work to do, but it was encouraging to see the offense get off to a good start to the season.
Biggest Takeaways for the Colts:
The main takeaway for the Colts is that they will basically rely upon quarterback Andrew Luck to do everything. Luck certainly had to carry the offense against the Bengals as he had a whopping 53 pass attempts. Luck showed what made him an elite quarterback a few years ago as he had 319 yards and 3 touchdowns. However, he also showed a little bit of rust as he had an interception and he didn’t look very sharp at times. Either way, the rest of the offense didn’t help him out much especially the running backs who only combined for 75 yards. The running game should be better if Marlon Mack returns from injury soon, but Andrew Luck is going have to do a lot this season if the Colts want to remain competitive. Meanwhile, another takeaway was the performance of the Colts defense. The Colts defense actually had a couple of bright spots as they forced a couple of turnovers and defensive end Margus Hunt had a couple of sacks. However, the Colts defense still struggled against a decent Bengals offense and it didn’t inspire much confidence that Indianapolis could improve on defense. The Colts showed that they still have a long way to go on defense, yet it was at least a little encouraging that they made a few big plays. Overall, Andrew Luck’s return didn’t go as planned, but it wasn’t exactly his fault. The rest of the Colts roster needs to play much better if they want to have a chance to win games.