Times are changing at the top of the Indianapolis Colts wide receiver core.
In their 34-17 win over the Tennessee Titans on Thursday Night Football, T.Y. Hilton had one of his better games of 2020 with four catches for 40 yards. But unlike the majority of his tenure with the Blue and White, he was not the most targeted weapon. That honor belonged to rookie Michael Pittman Jr.
The 23-year-old second round pick out of USC showed what he can really do last night. With 101 receiving yards and seven receptions, Pittman was Philip Rivers’ favorite target in the key matchup of division foes. Because of the huge win, Indianapolis is back to a tie for first place in the AFC South heading into next week against the Green Bay Packers.
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On The Fan Morning Show Friday, Jeff Rickard, Kevin Bowen, and Big Joe welcomed Colts play-by-play man Matt Taylor to discuss the environment in Nashville last night. He mentioned that Pittman took a major step in his young career.
“I think last night he displayed fully what the Colts liked about him and what he showed at USC,” Taylor said. “He had a career high in receiving and in the last two games he has 11 catches for about 150 yards.”
Going into this short week, the only way the Colts would win down in Tennessee was if their playmakers could step up. No bad interceptions from Rivers, good balance between the pass and run, and controlling Derrick Henry. All of those factors went the Colts way.
Rivers threw one touchdown pass to Nyheim Hines, who had two total on the night. Eight different players caught passes, and Henry did not score a touchdown for the Titans. He did have 103 yards of rushing though. But everything in the box score goes back to Pittman’s big night.
“He has been back for three games and is now 100 percent after the leg injury that derailed him a little bit in the first half,” Taylor added. “We’re starting to see the playmaker that he is and the connection that Rivers has with him. It’s a really good sign and fun to see the Colts spreading it out.”
Frank Reich and the Colts can now relax this weekend and get ready for Green Bay next Sunday. But another matchup with the Titans is looming at Lucas Oil Stadium in Week 12. It could be a battle for sole possession of first place in the division.
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