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    When Ryan Tannehill looks across the field Sunday White Johnny Unitas Jersey , he’ll see an encouraging sign in Andrew Luck’s comeback.Six years after the Miami Dolphins drafted Tannehill seven picks behind Luck, Sunday’s starting quarterbacks seem to be following similar paths.Both missed all of last season with injuries. Each is trying to make a late-season playoff run. And Tannehill hopes to prove he, like Luck, can successfully return from a problematic throwing shoulder.”I know he was dealing with stuff throughout the offseason,” Tannehill said. “I don’t know exactly what he had going on, but I have a ton of respect for Andrew and he’s playing really well right now.”Actually, Luck is playing the best football of his career 鈥?more than 21 months after undergoing surgery for a partially torn labrum in his right shoulder.Throughout his extended absence, Luck dealt with physical pain and mental anguish, brought on at least partially because he couldn’t help his teammates when they most needed him.Tannehill understands after missing the previous five games with an injured shoulder capsule.Similar to Luck, Tannehill had to be shut down at one point from throwing.But last week’s bye gave Tannehill enough time to get back. Coach Adam Gase announced Tuesday that Tannehill would be back in the lineup against Luck, even though Tannehill acknowledges he may play the rest of the season through the pain.”I’m not quite 100 percent, but I feel confident and have made all the throws that I’m going to need to make over the course of a game,” Tannehill said. “Everyone is confident that no further injury is going to be caused by playing through it at this point White Peyton Manning Jersey , with where it’s at in the healing process, and confident moving forward.”The Dolphins need Tannehill to be at his best. They haven’t scored a touchdown in nine quarters and are one of five teams, along with the Colts, tied at 5-5 for the AFC’s No. 6 playoff spot.This week’s challenge could be daunting.During their four-game winning streak, Indy’s defense is allowing just 17.5 points per game and Luck has thrown at least three touchdown passes in seven consecutive games. If the conference’s reigning offensive player of the week throws three more Sunday, he will break a tie with former Dolphins star Dan Marino and tie former Colts star Peyton Manning for the second-longest streak in league history.Luck also is on pace to set career highs for completion percentage and passer rating 鈥?not bad for a guy some thought would never regain his pre-injury form.”I am not going to go and play the game of looking back to different years and comparing and contrasting,” Luck said. “It just doesn’t fly in my mind. But I do think that every week I feel a little better.”And if Tannehill’s body starts feeling better, perhaps the results will follow.”I think you have to step in and play your game. I feel confident,” Tannehill said. “I feel completely confident that we can do all the things that we’ve done in this offense.”Here are a few other things to know about Miami’s matchup with Indianapolis:WELCOME BACKDolphins running back Frank Gore returns to Indianapolis for the first time since becoming a free agent last winter.While Gore wants to show his former team what it’s missing, the Colts still hold Gore in high regard.”He’s legendary, not just in this building,” Colts coach Frank Reich said. “I’ve been on other teams and every team I have been on they talk about Frank. He has set the standard for (pass) protections.”UNDERUSEDMiami’s Kenny Stills has only 19 receptions this season, but four have gone for touchdowns and he’s likely to see more balls thrown his way with receivers Albert Wilson and Jakeem Grant out for the rest of this season.”We’ve had opportunities where he does get behind the defense and we can’t get the ball to him Peyton Manning Jersey ,” coach Adam Gase said. “It’s a little frustrating probably for me. He doesn’t say much about it.”IN PERSPECTIVEColts kicker Adam Vinatieri became the NFL’s career leader in regular-season wins (210) last week. During Wednesday’s team meeting, Reich put the milestone in perspective for his young team.”I said imagine if you had a 13-year career in the NFL that would be pretty awesome,” Reich said. “Then I said imagine if you went 16-0 for 13 seasons 鈥?you’d still be chasing Vinny for the wins record. That’s quite an accomplishment.”ON THE ROAD…The Dolphins have lost four straight road games by a combined score of 138-59. And since the middle of last season, they’ve lost nine of the past 10 outside their home stadium.Miami hasn’t played at Indianapolis since 2013, but it did win that game in Luck’s second season.AP Sports Writer Steven Wine also contributed to this report. In a back stretch full of games that were virtually “must win” for the Colts, this week that sentiment is even more relevant. The Colts travel to Houston Sunday, and this time it really is a must win game. A loss to the Texans all but assures that the Colts will be staying home in January. With such an impactful game ahead, let’s take a look at the matchups that will define this game.Colts Offensive Line vs Texans Defensive LineThe offensive line of the Colts will look dramatically different when they take the field Sunday from the unit that faced the Texans in their first contest. How different? Well, if C Ryan Kelly is unable to play, which seems likely, the only lineman who played against the Texans in week 4 who will play Sunday is G Quenton Nelson. Although they haven’t been quite as sharp without Ryan Kelly, this is a wildly different unit than the one that allowed 4 sacks and 10 QB hits. Since that game, the team has given up just 5 more sacks. The return of Anthony Castonzo and the emergence of Mark Glowinski at right guard and Braden Smith at right tackle have solidified one of the better lines in football Youth Reggie Wayne Stitched Jersey , and Evan Boehm has stepped up to fill in for Ryan Kelly admirably. With that said, that line will face a tough competition on Sunday. J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney are having great years and will look to be disruptive on the edge and get into the backfield like they did in the first matchup. I don’t expect the Colts’ offensive line to be perfect here, but they’ve faced a lot of very good defensive lines, and I’d be willing to bet that Quenton Nelson is a greatly improved player from the guy who got put on his butt by Clowney in week 4. This will be an important matchup to determine if the offense can get going after two rough weeks, because keeping Andrew Luck upright will be critical.Marlon Mack vs Texans linebackersPhoto by Sam Greenwood/Getty ImagesMarlon Mack has had a couple very good games, but hasn’t been a huge impact over the last few weeks. That needs to change if this team plans to make it to see the playoffs. When the Colts have effectively run the ball, it has meant a better balance, less predictability in terms of play calls, and an overall more potent offense. If they can get Marlon Mack going early, it will help establish some rhythm to the offense and set them up for shorter 2nd and 3rd down situations which are much harder to defend.I anticipate that the offensive line will be able to open some holes for Mack. It will then fall to him to take advantage at the second level. His ability to break off chunk plays hasn’t been on display this season as much as it was last year, and they need to see it resurface as this season comes to a close. They’ll need him at his best for this stretch of games, and hopefully Frank Reich has a plan to involve him more heavily than last week.T.Y. Hilton vs Texans secondaryPhoto by Tim Warner/Getty ImagesPart of the reason that the Colts need to get Marlon Mack going early is that it will enable them to open up their most significant weapon against the Texans, T.Y. Hilton. If they are able to get the play action game working to Hilton early on Shop Indianapolis Colts Jerseys , this game could swing in the Colts’ favor quickly. In games where Hilton is doing his thing, the Colts tend to get into a groove, and Hilton has put up stupid numbers against the Texans over the years. If ever they needed him to do so, now is the time. First, however, they need him to make it to a practice and get healthy for the game, which is no guarantee at this point.Anthony Walker vs Lamar MillerPhoto by Joe Robbins/Getty ImagesLamar Miller has had a pretty solid couple of weeks for the Texans. Since week 11 he has topped 100 yards from scrimmage, and his 97-yard run against the Titans is something that defensive players lose sleep over. Anthony Walker will likely be the guy primarily tasked with limiting Miller’s effectiveness in the passing game and as an explosive runner. Walker has gotten better and better as the season has gone on, and I think this is a matchup he is equipped to handle. Darius Leonard of course will play a role in this as well, but ultimately it will come down to Walker playing at his best and making sure the defense is on the same page and doing what they need to in order to limit Miller’s impact. The Colts have played relatively well against the run, but they can sometimes let those big plays get by them, and they cannot afford to do that Sunday. Stopping that means staying disciplined and making sound open field tackles. Those are things the Colts have done very well at times and very poorly at others. Deshaun Watson vs Colts secondaryPhoto by Matthew Stockman/Getty ImagesThe Colts secondary has been a bit of a conundrum. At times they have played pretty well. At other times they’ve left us wanting to pull our hair out. We need a good performance this week against Deshaun Watson and a Texans team that has gotten hot. There isn’t anything unbeatable about Watson. Don’t get me wrong, he is not without ability. His athleticism makes it possible to extend plays with his legs Reggie Wayne Salute To Service Jersey , and he uses that when necessary. He is a good quarterback who plays smart football and has the fortune to be throwing the ball to a ridiculous receiver in the form of DeAndre Hopkins. The Texans are undoubtedly lucky to have him. If the Colts want a prayer of impacting this game, it will mean disrupting the rhythm of the receivers getting off the line of scrimmage, being quick and aggressive to react to the ball in the air, and limiting yards after the catch by making good open field tackles on receivers. These are areas they’ve struggled, and Keke Coutee was able to go over 100 yards in their first matchup because of it.The Colts will need to have a plan to minimize the impact Hopkins can have, because with Coutee nursing a hamstring issue, they don’t have a lot of other truly dangerous receivers to deal with. If they let Watson sit comfortably in the pocket and throw to the seam to Hopkins, it is going to be a very long day.

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