|Date of game: 9/23/2012
Recap: Indianapolis vs. Jacksonville
Indianapolis, IN (Sports Network) - Cecil Shorts hauled in the game-winning 80-yard touchdown pass from Blaine Gabbert with 45 seconds remaining and the Jacksonville Jaguars stunned the Indianapolis Colts, 22-17, at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Starting from the 20 after the Jags allowed a go-ahead 37-yard field goal by Adam Vinatieri, Gabbert took a quick three-step drop and fired it right on Shorts' numbers. The second-year wideout blew past the Colts defense all the way to the end zone for the lead. The two-point conversion attempt was unsuccessful.
The Colts got the ball back on their own 38 with 35 seconds to go and no timeouts. On the third play of the drive, Andrew Luck hit T.Y. Hilton for 36 yards to the Jacksonville 26.
Luck then spiked the ball with seven seconds left for one last play, but his heave to the end zone was batted down, sealing the win for the Jaguars.
"That was typical NFL finish, up and down, up and down emotionally," Jaguars coach Mike Mularky said. "The staff is extremely proud of our football team. We've got to be a little more consistent though."
Maurice-Jones Drew ran for 177 yards on 28 carries and his 63rd career rushing touchdown, which pushed him past Fred Taylor for the franchise record. It was his fifth career game with 150-or-more yards.
Gabbert finished with 155 yards and a touchdown on 10-of-21 passing for the Jags (1-2), who avoided starting 0-3 for the first time since 2003.
Luck threw for 313 yards on 22-of-46 passing, two touchdowns and one interception for the Colts (1-2). Hilton finished with four catches for 113 yards and a score.
Colts receiver Austin Collie was active for the first time this season after missing the previous two games with a head injury, but left in the third quarter with an injury to his right knee.
"It was a devastating loss," Colts coach Chuck Pagano said. "To play a first half like we played, then come out in the second half and we couldn't do anything."
Jacksonville began the game with possession and effectively marched 54 yards in 14 plays to the Indianapolis 26, converting two third-downs along the way.
Facing 3rd-and-3 from the 19, Gabbert took a seven-yard sack and Josh Scobee booted a 44-yard field goal on the following play to give the Jags the early lead.
The Colts began their first offensive series from the 26, but Luck's second pass of the game was picked off by Robert Mathis.
The rookie signal-caller was given a reprieve as Mathis was whistled for pass interference, taking the interception off the board. Four plays later, Luck hit a wide-open Hilton for a 40-yard touchdown strike, making it 7-3.
After both teams exchanged punts for most of the second quarter, the Colts began their final drive of the first half at their own 20 with 5:30 on the clock.
Luck led an impressive 14-play, 80-yard drive -- completing five passes for more than 10 yards -- before finishing it off with a quick four-yard TD strike to Mewelde Moore, to take a 14-3 lead at the half.
The Jags began their first second-half possession with excellent field position at the 41. On the very first play, Jones-Drew exploded through the line and galloped 59 yards to the end zone, cutting the deficit to 14-10.
Jacksonville came up with the first turnover of the game midway through the third quarter as Paul Posluszny intercepted a deep pass over the middle by Luck at the Indy 49.
From there, the Jags reached the Colts' 29 before Scobee was good from 47 yards out, shaving the deficit down to one.
After forcing a three-and-out, the Jags got the ball back at their own 15 with 1:27 left in the third quarter. Gabbert led an 11-play, 77-yard drive, helped by a pair of defensive pass interference calls, to the Indy 8 and Scobee hit from 26 yards out to give Jacksonville the lead, 16-14, early in the fourth quarter.
Indy responded on its ensuing drive with a 12-play drive down to the Jacksonville 13. On 4th-and-1 however, the offense was called for delay of game. Vinatieri then missed the 36-yard field goal attempt, keeping the Jags in front.
"We just had a little lack of focus." Luck said. "I point the finger at myself for that. "I made some bad decisions."
With 1:33 left in the game, Luck led a quick five-play, 48-yard drive to the Jacksonville 19 and the usually-clutch Vinatieri atoned for his earlier miss with a 37-yarder to make it 17-16, Colts.Game Notes
Despite the setback, Indy holds a 15-8 advantage in the all-time series ...
Jacksonville has won four of the past five meetings between the teams ... The
Jags went 4-for-13 on third down after not converting any third down chances
last week against the Texans ... Colts defensive lineman Dwight Freeney missed
his second consecutive game with an ankle injury ... Colts receiver Reggie
Wayne caught eight passes for 88 yards and has at least one catch in 168 of
his 174 career games.