To the dismay of the Indianapolis Colts, the world was watching last week when they faced off against the New England Patriots for the first time since the “Deflategate” debacle that took place in the AFC Championship game last season.
Colts Head Coach Chuck Pagano made a couple of daring special teams calls in the game — an onside kick attempt and an extremely awkward fake punt attempt.
Both plays ended as you would expect against the disciplined special teams of the Patriots.
Trailing by six points with 1:14 remaining in the third quarter, the Colts attempted a ridiculous fake punt attempt on 4th down and three. The Colts shifted the entirety of their offensive line to the right of the field, with a pair of gunners and the punter lined up behind them.
None of the lineman who shifted lined up correctly on the line of scrimmage, which immediately drew a penalty when the ball was snapped. Wideout Griff Whalen became the center on the play, and snapped the ball to safety Colt Anderson, who was instantly demolished by a slew of Patriots defenders upon the snap of the ball.
After the game, Pagano insisted the Colts were trying to get the Patriots out of position, but they had six guys lined up in the box with only one offensive blocker at the snap of the ball. If they failed to catch the Patriots players off guard, Pagano should have call a timeout instead of following through with the risky, broken play on his own 37-yard line. The Colts were only down by one score, and still snapped the ball. Both the play call and formation appeared to have everyone confused, including the Colts.
Many responded on social media, including the Maine Football twitter account, which tweeted at the Colts: “Hey @Colts, this is how it’s done. #BlackBearNation #CAAFB.” Along with the tweet, Maine attached a video of a two point conversion attempt against James Madison in 2011 that the Black Bears converted to win the game 25-24 in a similar formation to what the Colt’s ran against New England.
The tweet went viral, showing up on ESPN, NESN, Washington Post and other major news outlets.