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STRONG HALF FROM SECONDARY SPURS WIN

Posted Dec 9, 2012

Overcoming a 13-point deficit in the first half to the Titans, the Colts collected their third straight win and improved to 9-4 on the year Sunday afternoon. Two second-half interceptions, one for a touchdown, helped limit the Titans to three second half points.

INDIANAPOLIS – As it has been a common occurrence throughout the 2012 regular season, the Colts were presented with adversity in the first half of Sunday’s game against the Titans.

 

Their response also brought about another familiar theme: overcoming adversity.

 

Cassius Vaughn and Darius Butler each recorded second-half interceptions to help wipe away a 13-point deficit en route to the team’s third straight win, 27-23 over Tennessee on Sunday.

 

Vaughn’s break on a Jake Locker pass resulted in an interception deep in Tennessee territory and a clear path to the end zone.  His third-quarter touchdown gave the Colts their first lead of the game at 21-20.

 

“We believe in what we do,” Vaughn said after the game.  “No matter what…we believe in what we do.  In the beginning of the game they were getting us on a couple deep balls, a couple com-backs.  We turned it up in the second half.”

 

Vaughn’s interception for a touchdown is the Colts’ third this year, the most since the club tallied four in 1996.

 

While Vaughn aided the Colts’ offense in putting points on the board, fourth-year players Darius Butler and Vontae Davis also came up big in the final 30 minutes of play.

 

Butler, who returned an interception for a touchdown in Jacksonville last month, intercepted Locker with the Titans looking to capitalize on a potential game-winning drive.  The Colts’ second interception of the day resulted in a 40-yard field goal from Adam Vinatieri to extend the lead to 27-24.

 

“We struggled in the first half,” Butler said.  “Everybody has their time where they struggle.  We know as a defense, as a secondary, when plays come to us we need to make them.  We made some today.”

 

On a day where rookie quarterback Andrew Luck became the leader among Colts rookies at the position in passing yards, multiple members of the Colts secondary disrupted the passing game of the Titans.

 

With just more than four minutes remaining in the third quarter, Davis read Locker’s screen pass to Jared Cook and wrapped up the tight end for a loss on the drive following Vaughn’s interception return.  When the Titans threatened again with less than 11 minutes remaining in the game, Davis again answered by breaking up a pass in the corner of the end zone.

 

“In this league you have to be a complete corner,” Davis said.  “You have big running backs. When the ball gets out to the edges, the only players there to make the tackles there are the corners.”

 

The Colts’ complete second half, which included 20 points, helped them secure their third straight win over a divisional opponent.

 

“This is the kind of team we’ve come to be,” veteran safety Antoine Bethea said.  “If we need a play on defense, if we need to get a stop, somehow, some way we’ll get that.”

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