WHERE: Lucas Oil Stadium.
WHEN: Today, 1 p.m.
RECORDS: Browns (1-5); Colts (2-3).
SERIES: Browns lead, 17-4 (2-2 in the playoffs).
BROWNS ON OFFENSE: Quarterback Brandon Weeden is coming off a solid effort in a win over the Bengals. Since throwing four interceptions in the opener, Weeden has seven touchdown passes and six interceptions. Running back Trent Richardson suffered an injury near his rib cage last week but should be available. Montario Hardesty was impressive in place of Richardson. Rookie receiver Josh Gordon has become a big-play target. He has 12 receptions for an average of 22.8 yards per catch. Receivers Mohamed Massaquoi and Travis Benjamin have returned after dealing with hamstring injuries. The line has been outstanding in protecting Weeden, who's been sacked 11 times.
COLTS ON OFFENSE: It's all about the development of rookie quarterback Andrew Luck, the first overall pick in the 2012 draft. Luck has been as good as advertised. There have been some rough spots, as expected, but overall he's completed 118-of-221 passes for 1,488 yards, seven touchdowns and seven interceptions. The offense will be without running back Donald Brown, who recently had minor knee surgery. Rookie Vick Ballard will get the start. Luck knows he can depend on receiver Reggie Wayne, who still has game at age 33. Wayne leads in receptions with 41 for 593 yards and two touchdowns. Rookie tight end Coby Fleener, one of Luck's teammates at Stanford, has 17 catches for 281 yards.
BROWNS ON DEFENSE: Pass coverage improved last week with the return of cornerback Joe Haden from a four-game suspension. Cornerback Dimitri Patterson remains sidelined with an ankle injury. The pass rush hasn't been good. Jabaal Sheard, in particular, hasn't been posting the sack numbers he did as a rookie last season, but he's been active in other areas. Middle linebacker D'Qwell Jackson has taken the lead in tackles with 39.
COLTS ON DEFENSE: The Colts thrived on quarterback pressure during Tony Dungy's days as coach, with Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis leading the charge off the edge. Mathis is still a threat at strong-side linebacker. He has a team-high five sacks. Freeney has shown signs of age and checks in with one sack. The defense has been torn apart on the ground, yielding 159 yards a game. Linebacker Jerrell Freeman has a team-high 77 tackles. The Colts are allowing just 200 passing yards a game, a low figure because of the success teams have had through the air.
BROWNS ON SPECIAL TEAMS: Kicker Phil Dawson added two more field goals last week and is 12-of-12 for the season. Punter Reggie Hodges isn't striking the ball well. He has a net 37.4 average. Joshua Cribbs has struck the fountain of youth of late. He has a 31.3 average on kick returns and is averaging 15.4 yards on punt returns. He's also a big part of the coverage units.
COLTS ON SPECIAL TEAMS: Kicker Adam Vinatieri is probably headed to the Hall of Fame because of the big kicks he made with the Patriots. This season he's hit on 10 of 13 field-goal attempts. Punter Pat McAfee has a superb 41.6 net average. Rookie T.Y. Hilton is averaging 7.6 yards on punt returns and 22.5 on kick returns.
BROWNS MUST: Do anything to rattle Luck. Like Weeden, Luck will have his up and down moments. The Browns need to make sure that today is one of the down times for Luck. Offensively, the issue remains the same each week get Richardson rolling.
COLTS MUST: Slow down the Browns' ground attack. If Richardson plays, keeping him inside the tackles is important. The Colts need to have some success on the ground to open up the passing lanes for Luck.
PREDICTION: Browns, 27-20.