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Andrew Luck On 98-Yard Drive: "There Was A Special Look In The Guys' Eyes"

Intro: Down and just about out, on Sunday afternoon, the Colts offense put together a 12-play, 98-yard touchdown drive to ignite a comeback victory in Nashville.


INDIANAPOLIS – Andrew Luck entered the huddle with his feet in his own end zone.

Most quarterbacks wouldn't be smiling in this situation, but Luck isn't most quarterbacks.

These situations are what Luck has relished in his four NFL seasons.

Sure, some of Luck's own faults on Sunday had put the Colts in this position---down 13 points, 98 yards away from the end zone they wanted to be standing in, with the fourth-quarter clock ever dwindling.

Luck had everyone's attention.

"We got up there and there was a special look in the guys' eyes," Luck said of the Colts huddle.

"You're sitting on the 2-yard line. This is a test. If we can do this, we'll have a chance, and if we can't, we won't have a chance."

It was more than a test.

Outside of the series prior to halftime, the Colts entered the fourth quarter on Sunday with just one first down in seven drives since the Frank Gore touchdown run in the opening quarter.

It was gut-check time for the Colts offense.

"We've been through this situation so many times that it's second-nature to us," T.Y. Hilton said of the daunting task needing to erase a 13-point deficit with less than 13 minutes remaining.

"Once we got down, we said, 'Let's go, that's what I came here for, let's come back and win this game. It's like the mock-game. We practice this every week, every Saturday backed up. Let's get out of here and let's go have fun.' And that's what we did."

On the first 11 plays of the drive, the Colts encountered just one third-down, a two-yard run by Frank Gore to keep the chains moving on third-and-one.

Luck connected with Donte Moncrief for seven, Phillip Dorsett for eight, Gore for another eight, twice to Hilton for 30, and two completions to Coby Fleener for 22 pushed the Colts into Titans territory.

Then things began to stall.

An incomplete pass to Dorsett was followed by a false start penalty on Jack Mewhort. Then a sack of Luck appeared to doom things.

With the clock ticking under seven minutes, the Colts faced a third-and-20 from the Titans 35-yard line.

Phillip Dorsett, welcome to the NFL.

"We got the coverage for the right play and I knew the ball was coming. I just needed to make a play on it," Dorsett said of his leaping 35-yard touchdown to cap the 12-play, 98-yard drive.

Chuck Pagano pointed to Dorsett's "third and a mile" play as maybe the one that really changed the momentum.

"A great, great play by that kid to jump up and pluck that ball off the top of that defender who was in perfect position," Pagano said of the Colts first-round pick.

"If that doesn't happen you're looking at fourth-and-20. That was a huge play."

The comeback wasn't yet complete, but without this drive, nothing would have been possible.

If the Colts find themselves playing meaningful football once again in January, they can look back to a late September afternoon in Nashville as a major reason why.

Chuck Pagano said last week, "Our backs are against the wall and we need to respond."

On Sunday, with their backs against their own goal line, the Colts did more than respond.

"It's an emotional game," Luck, who was 8-of-10 for 110 yards on the touchdown drive, said after the comeback win. "Every game is, some more than others. This one certainly was, and you try not to ride the emotional roller coaster, in a sense. But I think after a game like this, you feel spent. And you should. If you're not giving it your all, then I think you're wrong.

"We needed this. We needed this."

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