Did Polian Get The Kickoff Changed To Benefit The Colts (the indianoplis CULT worships manning- it is not a team)
posted at 9/3/2011 11:30 PM EDT
This is what he said after the wild card loss to the jets
"I won't sugarcoat it or make excuses," Polian said on his radio show as quoted on Colts.com
. "Kickoff coverage lost the game for us."
On the play, Jets returner Antonio Cromartie
-- substituting for injured Brad Smith
-- returned a kick a yard deep in the end zone 47 yards to the Jets 46. The Jets then drove for a 32-yard field goal on the game's final play.
"So, it boils down to about two kickoff returns worth about 88 yards, which we didn't cover," Polian said. "It's that simple. Bill Parcells often says every 10 yards is worth one point. We gave them eight points, nine points basically, in terms of field position by our kickoff coverage. Both cases, it was one guy getting out of his lane, not maintaining lane discipline.
"Cromartie is a great straight-ahead runner and if you maintain lane discipline and don't give him a lane, he's going to change direction, which is not a strength. That lost the game for us, pure and simple."
Polian said the kickoff return was particularly upsetting because the defense minutes earlier had stopped the Jets on downs twice -- once after a punt and then again after the Jets were awarded a first down on a running-into-the-kicker penalty -- to set up a 50-yard field goal by Adam Vinatieri