The Indianapolis Colts notched a huge victory today over the division rival Tennessee Titans, as they won 34-26 on the road to improve to 3-4 on the year and notch their first AFC South victory.
The game was much closer than that score indicates, though, as the Colts actually trailed 23-20 late in the game. But Andrew Luck hit Jack Doyle for a seven-yard touchdown with 1:55 left to put the Colts ahead, and the defense actually didn’t blow it this time as T.Y. McGill strip-sacked Marcus Mariota while Robert Mathis picked up the fumble and returned it for a score.
The offense played very well on Sunday, as they got a lot going for them. They started early, they put up 27 points and 423 total yards, Luck had his fourth 300-yard day in seven games, T.Y. Hilton had his third 100-yard performance in the last five games, Jack Doyle had a career day, the offensive line protected well, and Adam Vinatieri converted both field goal attempts on the day - to extend his streak to 43 in a row, a new NFL record. Luck completed 27 of 39 passes (69.2%) for 353 yards (9.1 yards per attempt), three touchdowns, and no picks for a passer rating of 123.1 - while also dealing with four drops and also adding four rushes for 18 yards. He was absolutely phenomenal today, and a couple of his receivers were too: T.Y. Hilton caught seven passes for 133 yards and a score, while Jack Doyle caught nine passes for 78 yards and a touchdown.
Outside of the offense, however, it wasn’t a particularly good game for the Colts. Their defense was once again bad, and they gave up some big drives, some big plays, and made some really stupid mistakes. The penalties were really bad too, as the Colts committed 12 of them for 131 yards - and some of them were really big and crushing penalties, too. Some of the defensive plays and penalties were laughably bad, but in the end the offense was good and the defense provided a really key touchdown in the final minutes to secure the game.
The Colts now improve to 3-4 on the year, which is the same record the Titans now have. Indianapolis is alive in the AFC South still, but this game made it clear once again: this team is centered around Andrew Luck and the offense, and they’re totally dependent upon him. On days like today, that’s enough for a win in a key game.