AFC Notes: Colts, Jaguars, Titans


Colts QB Matt Ryan called Week 3’s win over the Chiefs a “confidence builder” for the organization and feels it will lead to more success. 

“I think it is a confidence builder knowing that you’re going against an excellent football team like we played last week,” Ryan said, via ProFootballTalk. “We had two phases of our team that played outstanding — special teams and defense kind of held us in there. Then knowing we had young players step up and make plays in the most critical of situations, I think that’s a big stepping stone for us.”

Ryan added that they must continue building off of the recent win. 

“We’ve got to continue to progress and continue to get better, but the belief should be there because like I said, there are glimpses of us doing it the right way and certainly those end-of-game plays are big confidence boosts for guys.”

  • Colts HC Frank Reich said LB Shaquille Leonard (back) is making progress with his recovery and they will study his tape to make a decision on his availability for Sunday’s game: “He’s had three good days, made progress and continues to make progress. So let’s see how he responds. Get together with the medical staff, get together with Shaq, Chris and I, Gus, look at the tape one more time and make that decision.” (James Boyd)
  • The Colts officially ruled out S Julian Blackmon (ankle) from Week 4. 


  • Jaguars HC Doug Pederson said WR Zay Jones‘ ankle injury occurred this week so they held him out of Thursday’s practice and will have a better idea about his Week 4 availability on Friday. (John Shipley)
  • Pederson said WR Tim Jones will be the “next man up” if Jones is unable to play. (John Shipley)


Titans OC Todd Downing said he’s not paying attention to outside skepticism about his capabilities as an offensive coordinator and has confidence from HC Mike Vrabel, GM Jon Robinson, and the players. 

“I will tell you bluntly, I can’t pay attention to all the stuff that’s going on out there and all the opinions about me,” Downing said, via John Glennon of FanNation. “Everyone’s entitled to their opinion, and I respect the fact people have jobs to do, and people to find to place blame on. I know I’m responsible for the offense. I know there are certain things that come with this role – responsibilities, critiques and kind of constant evaluation that comes with this role. But I can’t afford to let somebody else’s opinion cloud what (coach Mike Vrabel) thinks of the job I’m doing, or (general manager) Jon Robinson thinks of the job I’m doing, or frankly, what the players in the locker room think of the job I’m doing.”

Downing thinks that he can plan ahead on drives more effectively going forward. 

“Certainly from my perspective, and things I can improve on, it’s just an intentionality with the drive review on the sidelines and setting up what we’re going to be getting to on the next drive,” Downing said. “Or maybe the next third down, so we can kind of predict some of those futures, if you will.”

Downing spoke about the downturn of production in Week 3’s win over the Raiders where they recorded 275 yards in the first half but only 86 yards in the second. 

“If you don’t pick up first downs, you‘re not able to come back with the counterpunch,” Downing said. “I think in the first half, we were able to set up some things, and then come back off play passes or screens off those looks. But that gets difficult to do when you’re not sustaining drives. I‘ve certainly got to do a better job at making sure we’re able to get into those counterpunches if you will.”

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