The team might wait a couple of years before it asks much from Jordan Beck and Michael Boley in defensive sets, but the rookie linebackers looked alert in combining for eight tackles, one sack, one pass defensed and one forced fumble.
Boley's sack of Colts backup Jim Sorgi was more the result of terrible, or nonexistent, protection than great athleticism, but the fifth-round draft choice deserves credit for seizing the opportunity. The primary backup to weak-side starter Keith Brooking, a four-time Pro Bowl selection, came from the left side on that play and on the snap in which he forced Peyton Manning to hurry a throw to Edgerrin James that reserve end Gabe Nyenhuis intercepted.
Beck, who plays behind Ed Hartwell in the middle, hit Aaron Moorehead so hard that the Indianapolis receiver lost a fumble that Cam Newton recovered for the Falcons at the Colts' 40.
"You have to be impressed from a lot of our younger players," Mora said. "Beck and Boley have done a lot of what our scouts said _ they move well in space and have big-time motors. Those guys can move."