The Indianapolis Colts lost 24-0 on Sunday, getting absolutely dismantled by the Jacksonville Jaguars. (Yes, you read that right.) It was a surprising result, and though it didn't include a successful onside kick or a last-second touchdown, it still stood out for being so unexpected. The Matt Ryan-led Colts didn't manage to score any points on the Jaguars, who were the laughingstock of the NFL less than a year ago.
The Colts know how this looks. Defensive tackle DeForest Buckner was pretty blunt in his postgame assessment of the one-sided contest.
"The s*** was embarrassing," Buckner said via ESPN. "We got our a** whooped. We have to come in tomorrow, take it on the chin and grow from this."
Ryan is the quarterback, so he has an outsized role in this "embarrassing" loss. He echoed Buckner's "we'll grow from this" mentality.
"I certainly had high expectations coming in," Ryan said via ESPN. "And you certainly don't think you're going to be 0-1-1. That's just not in the competitor's mindset. We are where we are, and I think being realistic about where we're at is important. It has to be brutal honesty."
Give Buckner a microphone at the next team meeting and he'll give Ryan all the brutal honesty he wants.
Colts continue being bad in Jacksonville
Brutal honesty alone can't fix this, though. The Colts were bad on both sides of the ball on Sunday. The offense generated just nine first downs and allowed Ryan to get sacked five times, and the defense allowed 331 yards on the day. Ryan was outplayed by a quarterback who is 15 years younger than him. He completed barely half of his passes and threw three interceptions. NFL rushing champ Jonathan Taylor was held to just 54 yards, which was the Colts' rushing total for the entire game.
The Colts always experience nothing but pain when they travel down to Jacksonville to play the Jags, so maybe they should have expected this. They've now lost eight straight games to the Jaguars in Florida, and the only three shutouts they've had since 2003 have come at hands of the Jags.
Since 2003 — a span of 361 regular season games — the Colts have only been shutout three times.
All three have come against the Jaguars.
— Zak Keefer (@zkeefer) September 18, 2022
Head coach Frank Reich can't really fix curses, though. He has to focus on things that are tangible. He said after the game that despite this "pathetic" loss to the Jags, he believes the Colts have the players and coaches to be successful. Colts fans can only hold their breath and hope he's right.