Late Field Goal Gives Jaguars 23-21 Victory over Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium
INDIANAPOLIS – The way Tony Dungy saw it, the Colts had chances.
So, after a second loss in three games this season, Dungy – in his seventh season as the Colts' head coach – focused not on officiating, and neither did he talk much about what could have been. Rather, he focused on what happened at Lucas Oil Stadium Sunday.
The Jacksonville Jaguars and Colts each had opunities for big plays, Dungy said.
The Jaguars made them. The Colts didn't.
Josh Scobee, who in 2004 kicked a 50-yard-plus field goal to beat the Colts, did the same thing on Sunday, kicking a 51-yard field goal with :04 remaining to give the previously-winless Jaguars a come-from-behind 23-21 victory in front of 65,938 at Lucas Oil Stadium late Sunday afternoon.
"That's what happened today – they made the plays," Dungy said.
"I tip my hat off Jacksonville," Colts middle linebacker and defensive captain Gary Brackett said. "We knew coming into the game that they were a tough football team. They always play us tough and we knew it was going to be a dogfight.
"They won the game in the closing seconds and you have to tip your hat off to those guys. Obviously, they had a good game plan coming in and running the ball against us.
"We just didn't stop them."
The Colts, the five-time defending AFC South champions, slipped to 1-2 with the loss, their first time under .500 after three games since 1998, Colts quarterback Peyton Manning's rookie season.
"That's a good word, I guess – disappointing," said Manning, who completed 15 of 29 passes for 216 yards and a touchdown with two interceptions for a passer rating of 59.0
"It is what it is. We have to deal with it and try to do something about it. It's never fun losing a game going into your bye week. You want to have a good taste in your mouth and kind of a positive feeling. We certainly don't have that right now."
The Colts and Jaguars are each two games behind the Tennessee Titans (3-0), 31-12 winners over the Houston Texans Sunday, in the AFC South.
The loss was the second for the Colts in as many regular-season games at Lucas Oil Stadium, the state-of-the-art stadium that opened in downtown Indianapolis this season. They went 15-1 at the RCA Dome the last two regular seasons.
The Colts, who entered the game ranked 32nd in the NFL in rushing, allowed Jacksonville 236 yards on 48 carries Sunday, with Jaguars running backs Fred Taylor and Maurice Jones-Drew each rushing for more than 100 yards.
Taylor, an 11-year veteran, rushed for 121 yards on 26 carries, and Jones-Drew – a third-year veteran – rushed for 107 yards on 19 carries, and Jones' 6-yard touchdown run with 1:17 remaining in the third quarter gave Jacksonville a 17-14 lead.
Jones' run set up a wild, memorable fourth-quarter – memorable for Jacksonville; frustrating for Indianapolis.
The Colts, who after struggling offensively in much of the first two games, produced 231 yards and 14 first-half first downs on Sunday, taking a 14-10 lead at halftime. But in the second half Sunday, they ran just six offensive plays for 17 yards in the first 27:27.
"It works both ways," Manning said. "We need to stay on the field. It's a double-edge deal. We have to do our job and stay on the field."
After a 21-yard field goal by Scobee gave the Jaguars a 20-14 lead with 2:33 remaining, Indianapolis moved 77 yards in 11 plays, taking the lead with a 2-yard run by running back Joseph Addai (78 yards, two touchdowns, 16 carries) with 1:07 remaining.
The Jaguars then drove 47 yards on seven plays to set up Scobee's game-winning field goal, a kick that came four plays after the most controversial play of the game.
With :29 remaining, the Jaguars faced 4th-and-1 from their 29. Quarterback David Garrard threw an incomplete pass to his right, and after the ball hit the Lucas Oil Stadium FieldTurf, Colts players celebrated. Seconds later came a penalty flag.
The call was pass interference against linebacker Freddy Keiaho, a call that gave Jacksonville a first down.
"I can't comment on it," Dungy said. "I looked at it and it looked like the game was over and it was a pass interference call. I tried to find out what the call was. That was the only thing disappointing to me.
"After the timeouts, I never could get an explanation what the call was. But again, we had plenty of chances to stop them on that drive and on drives before that."
The Colts, who hadn't started quickly in the first two games of the season, changed that on Sunday in eye-catching fashion.
Manning completed 4 of 4 passes for 55 yards on a seven-play 80-yard drive, giving the Colts a 7-0 lead with a four-yard touchdown pass to eight-time Pro Bowl wide receiver Marvin Harrison with 11:03 remaining. The play was Harrison's first touchdown of the season.
Addai rushed three times for 17 yards on the drive, and finished the quarter with 38 yards rushing on six carries. Manning completed 7 of 8 passes in the quarter for 78 yards and a touchdown.
The Jaguars cut the lead to 7-3 with a 26-yard field goal by Scobee with 12:33 remaining before halftime. Scobee's field goal capped a 75-yard, 13-play drive that consumed 7:09.
With 5:10 remaining in the quarter, Jaguars cornerback Rashean Mathis returned an interception 61 yards to give the Jaguars their first lead, 14-10.
"I didn't get a real good look at it," Manning said. "I did see Marvin's jersey afterwards. . . . I didn't get a great look at it. I've thrown a lot of hook routes to Marvin and when he's coming back to the quarterback, it's almost impossible for the corner to cut in front of him unless he's grabbing him.
"That was disappointing, because it gave them the touchdown, but it happened early and we had chances to overcome them. Certainly, it's unfortunate."
On the ensuing drive, the Colts drove 74 yards on 11 plays, using 3:24 before Addai gave Indianapolis a 14-10 lead with 1:28 remaining. Second-year wide receiver Anthony Gonzalez caught a 24-yard pass on 3rd-and-11 from the Colts 40 to allow the Colts to maintain possession.
Later in the drive, the Colts converted 3rd-and-10 when Mathis was called for interfering with Harrison on the Jaguars 20.
Jones-Drew, the Jaguars' third-year running back, rushed for a 6-yard touchdown with 1:17 remaining in the third quarter, giving Jacksonville a three-point lead. Jones-Drew's touchdown was the only scoring of the quarter.
The Jaguars moved 71 plays on the go-ahead drive, with Taylor's 37-yard, tackle-breaking run on 1st-and-10 from the Colts 47 setting up the touchdown.
Earlier in the third quarter, the Colts had an opportunity to extend a four-point lead after cornerback Kelvin Hayden intercepted Garrard and returned it to the Jaguars 47. On 2nd-and-1 from the Jaguars 38, Manning threw deep to Harrison, but Jaguars cornerback Brian Williams intercepted at the 2 and returned it to the Jacksonville 29.
"It was a big play," Dungy said. "We were going for a big play. They made a great play."
Manning called the play "a poor decision my part. The backside safety came over and I probably threw it a little earlier, maybe, than I wanted to. I didn't quite get a good look at him. He came over and made the play.
"Obviously, that's one you'd like to have back."
The Colts, who played Sunday without 2007 Associated Press Defensive Player of the Year Bob Sanders, will be off next week before traveling to Houston on October 5.
"I think we'll be better as our young guys get experience and they play and some of those guys have played well for us," Dungy said. "Today, they had as many injuries as we did. They outplayed us a little bit.
"What we have to do is use our bye and get back and start playing better fundamental football."
Said Manning, "We need to use this bye week to get better. We need to hopefully get a couple of guys back after the bye week. I thought it was an early bye week when the schedule came out, but maybe with our injury situation we can use it to our advantage.
"Hopefully, we can use the practice time to get better and hopefully bounce back with a win."