The number one offense in the league was struggling. Andrew Luck was off his game. The team's wide receivers combined for just two catches and eleven yards in the entire first half. And the team trailed 21-10 midway through the third quarter, facing another third and long after two incomplete passes by Luck. His star wide receiver, T.Y. Hilton, had four catches for 40 yards but was largely being shut down by Browns corner Joe Haden. Yet on this third down play with ten yards to go, Luck displayed the trust he has in his wideout. He threw it up to T.Y. Hilton. The receiver adjusted with the ball in the air, came down with it, and then made a nice play to get into the end zone. It was a 42-yard touchdown reception for Hilton, one that drew the game within one score, at 21-16 (the Colts failed on the two-point conversion try). And from that point on, T.Y. Hilton took over the football game. "The touchdown to T.Y. really opened things up," Luck noted after the game.
From that point on, including the 42-yard scoring reception with 4:01 left in the third quarter, Hilton caught six passes for 110 yards and 2 touchdowns as the Colts' stormed back from an awful start and a double-digit deficit to win 25-24. The winning score came on a one-yard touchdown pass from Luck to Hilton with 32 seconds left in the game.
After starting the game 13 of 34 for 127 yards and a pick, Andrew Luck finished the game 11 of 19 for 167 yards, two touchdowns and a pick to lead the Colts to a win, and it all turned on that 42-yard scoring toss to Hilton. From that point on, the Colts' quarterback and receiver duo led the Colts to another come from behind win. It was the ninth fourth quarter comeback for Luck in his career and the twelfth game winning drive. It was the seventh time that Luck's team has won when trailing by double-digits in the second half.
Luck just continued his fantastic statistical season, continuing to lead the NFL in passing yards and moving into a tie for first in touchdown passes this season (after Peyton Manning didn't throw any today). He's on pace to throw for 5,298 yards and 44 touchdowns on the season. T.Y. Hilton, meanwhile, is also having a phenomenal season. Hilton is currently seventh in the league with 78 receptions, second with 1,295 yards, and tied for 16th with seven touchdown receptions (though keep in mind the Sunday and Monday night games have yet to be played). That puts him on pace for 96 catches, 1,594 yards, and 8 touchdowns. That yardage total would rank third all-time in Colts history (behind two Marvin Harrison seasons) for a single-season. Both players have been having a phenomenal season. And both players combined to lead the Colts back from a double-digit deficit in Cleveland against one of the NFL's best pass defenses.
On a day where the Colts' offense struggled, T.Y. Hilton provided the spark the team needed to mount a comeback and improve to 9-4 on the season with their first road win over a team with a winning record.