The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Pro Sports

December 8, 2013

Frosty Colts offense hopes to unthaw in frigid Cincinnati

INDIANAPOLIS —

Andrew Luck spent his high school years in Texas and his college days in California. So its been awhile since the Indianapolis Colts' second-year quarterback has played in the snow.

"I love playing outside," Luck said earlier this week at the Indiana Farm Bureau Football Center. "I think there's something about it that's fun. So we're looking forward to it."

The Colts (8-4) practiced outdoors in the elements all week in preparation for today's pivotal game at Cincinnati (8-4). Late-week forecasts were calling for 31 degrees and a 70 percent chance of wintry mix precipitation in the Queen City.

Those are the types of conditions that head coach Chuck Pagano had in mind when he promised to bring a smash-mouth, physical style to Indianapolis. He and offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton hope to get the power running game revved up behind Donald Brown and Trent Richardson.

Pagano likes what he's seen in practice this week, and he never considered shielding his players from the winter weather.

"You got to get outside and play in it," he said. "You can be in the comforts and confines of the indoor (facility) with the heater on and all that nice stuff, but that ain't how it's going to be (on game day). To just throw them out there Sunday at 12 o'clock at warm-up and then kick off at 1, it wouldn't be fair to any of us."

It remains to be seen what effect the cold temperatures will have on an Indianapolis offense that's been fighting off frost for the past five weeks.

The Colts averaged 26.7 points per game in the first seven weeks of the season and failed to reach the 20-point mark just once. That number has dipped to 19.6 points per game in the past five games, with wild inconsistency from week-to-week.

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