Against the Tennessee Titans, the Colts knew they had to stop the run. And to be successful at that, they moved safety Bob Sanders up -- at times right by the linebackers -- to make his presence not only known, but felt.
Sanders responded with 11 tackles and 2.5 sacks for the game. He was also credited with 3 quarterback hurries as well. That helped get the attention of ColtPower fans, who selected him as the Colt most deserving of a gameball. And today, the NFL announced that Sanders was the league's AFC Defensive Player of the Week. Sanders is in good company since the last Indianapolis defensive back to win the award was Jason Belser for his December 5, 1996 performance against the Eagles.
Following the game, Sanders was modest about registering the 2.5 sacks, the first of his pro career.
"They (the coaches) put me in a great situation that I can make tackles," he said. "Vince (Young) runs the ball and you have a chance to get sacks if you keep him in the chute and you’re able to run him down."
Sanders stats are even more impressive when you drill down further:
-- Only one of his eleven tackles came after a catch. The rest were sacks or were made during running plays.
-- In addition to three plays he made that resulted in sacks, five other tackles Sanders made were within three yards of the line of scrimmage.
-- When he split a sack with LB Gary Brackett, it was on a third-down play that forced a punt.
-- When he teamed up with Dwight Freeney on a 3rd-and-2 play, they held the runner a yard short of the first-down marker, setting up a failed attempt to convert the first down on the next play when DT Raheem Brock held the running back to no gain.
You said it...
Here's what some of the great fans from our Fan Forum had to say about Sanders' performance while voting him as this week's recipient of the ColtPower Fans' Gameball:
"The final sack that ran a lot of clock at the end of the 4th quarter was the play of the game and imo (in my opinion) made the difference in the game. That is on top of everything else he did out there, flying around as usual." -- jcpflames12
"Without question Bob Sanders is just unbelievable and was defensive star of the game and I also voted him player of the game." -- BoilerMacR
"Sanders without question." -- bent20705
Be sure to check in our Fan Forum following Sunday's game so that you can vote on who will get the ColtPower Fans' GameBall for Week 3! And be sure to leave a comment about why your favorite is deserving of the honor. You might find your quote in this feature next week!