NFL Has Nightmare First Half Between Colts & Broncos On Thursday Night Football

There’s been a prevailing narrative for years that the NFL should get rid of the Thursday Night Football game. Of course, they never will because there’s money to be made. But there could be no better example to abolish the contest than the one between the Denver Broncos and Indianapolis Colts.

To put it mildly, the game has so far been a disaster for the NFL — for several reasons. First, it started with a scary hit leading to another stumbling player forced to exit. This time it was Colts running back Nyheim Hines, who was starting for the injured Jonathan Taylor.

Following all the negative press about the handling of Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa’s concussion, this was not how the league wanted the game to start.

Hines was quickly ruled out, as the league obviously could ill-afford to see him return to the game, regardless of his status.

League executives were probably hoping a well-played remainder of Thursday Night Football could allay fans concerns. Alas, the rest of the first half was an abject disaster from a football standpoint. At the intermission, the Broncos led the Colts, 6-3. There were nearly as many punts (7) as points (9). There were also seven penalties.

Hopefully you like watching kickers and punters because that's been the highlight of Thursday Night Football between the Colts and Broncos
Hopefully you like watching kickers and punters because that’s been the highlight of Thursday Night Football between the Colts and Broncos! (Photo by Justin Tafoya/Getty Images)

What probably seemed like a great quarterback matchup prior to the season between Matt Ryan and Russell Wilson has become anything but. Matt Ryan looks like a guy who could retire midseason with how poorly he’s playing. He doesn’t look like he can even throw a football anymore.

With an opportunity for a touchdown to take the lead before the half, Matt Ryan took back-to-back sacks and lost 27 yards on two plays. They went from first-and-10 at the 15 yard line to third-and-38 at the 43. He also fumbled, but was fortunate to have an offensive lineman recover. They were also fortunate to connect on a 52-yard field goal to avoid the first half shutout.

Ryan has been sacked four times. While sacks are often exciting plays, these just look kinda sad. Ryan doesn’t seem to belong on an NFL field.

While Wilson didn’t turned the ball over like Ryan, he was 9-17 for 69 yards at the break. He did have an 18-yard run, which is fun, I suppose. And, they had two field goals to the Colts one. So, that’s good, I suppose.

All-in-all, the first half was bad. The salt in the wound is what Amazon has shelled out for this package.

They should ask the NFL for their money back. These are not the types of tweets they are hoping to see for their multi-billion dollar Thursday Night Football package:


Follow Dan Zaksheske on Twitter: @OutkickDanZ

Written by Dan Zaksheske

Dan began his sports media career at ESPN, where he survived for nearly a decade. Once the Stockholm Syndrome cleared, he made his way to Outkick. He is secure enough in his masculinity to admit he is a cat-enthusiast with three cats, one of which is named “Brady” because his wife wishes she were married to Tom instead of him.

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