Tracy High graduate Matt Overton, in his second year as long-snapper for the Indianapolis Colts, said their 45-44 comeback win in the AFC wild-card game Saturday, Jan. 4, exemplified the trust and leadership the team will need in the playoffs.
Overton, Class of 2003, said that he and his teammates knew head coach Chuck Pagano and quarterback Andrew Luck could lead them back from a 38-10 third-quarter deficit.
“At that point, it was pretty frustrating, but we knew there was a lot more football to be played,” Overton said. “It seemed like we gained some confidence and gained some momentum. We scored on just about every possession in the second half.
“We know we can play that well going forward into playoffs. Our sole focus now is New England.”
He expects a tough game against the New England Patriots on Saturday, Jan. 11, at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass. Game time is 5:15 p.m. Pacific Standard Time.
“We’re excited to go out there,” Overton said. “Our goal is the Super Bowl, to be the champs.”
Overton said that three wins in a row for the Colts (12-5) at the end of the regular season primed the team for the wild-card win.
“We were starting to click on all cylinders getting ready for playoffs,” he said.
Overton’s relatives and friends traveled from California for the wild-card game.
“For me personally, to have a win against Kansas City at home for my first playoff game was special,” Overton said.
Tracy will also be represented in the NFC divisional playoffs Sunday, Jan. 12, between the Carolina Panthers and the San Francisco 49ers.
West High 2007 graduate Amini Silatolu, a second-year left guard for the Carolina Panthers, is still sidelined with an anterior cruciate ligament injury, which he sustained in an Oct. 6 game against the Arizona Cardinals.
At the time, Panthers coach Ron Rivera said it appeared to be a season-ending injury. Silatolu couldn’t be reached for comment. This week, he was still on the Panthers’ injured reserve roster.
Silatolu started for the Panthers in all but one game last year and started against the Seattle Seahawks, Buffalo Bills and New York Giants at the start of the 2013 season. He was injured in the third quarter of the Panthers’ 22-6 loss to the Cardinals.
The Panthers (12-4) went on to win 11 of the next 12 regular-season games, including a 10-9 win at San Francisco on Nov. 10, becoming the NFC South division champions.
The team had a bye for the first round of the playoffs and will host the 49ers at 10:05 a.m. PST on Sunday in Bank of American Stadium in Charlotte, N.C.
Contact Bob Brownne at 830-4227 or email@example.com.