Drive of the Game

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Colts-Titans Drive Of The Game: An Exclamation Point Before Halftime

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INDIANAPOLIS —The boxscore will show a five-play, 85-yard drive taking 2:54 off the clock that culminated in an 18-yard touchdown run by Jordan Wilkins.

But let’s take a closer look at the Indianapolis Colts’ Week 11 Drive of the Game, presented by Hays + Sons:

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Go to it again.

Midway through the second quarter of Sunday’s Week 11 AFC South showdown between the Colts and the Titans, quarterback Andrew Luck liked what he saw with T.Y. Hilton locked into one-on-one coverage against Adoreé Jackson, and launched a perfectly-placed deep ball down the middle of the field right into the hands of the waiting receiver, who darted into the end zone to complete a 68-yard touchdown play, putting the Colts up 17-0.

After a three-and-out on the ensuing Tennessee drive, Colts head coach Frank Reich smelled blood in the water.

After the punt, Reich dialed up another deep call for Hilton on the very next play from scrimmage.

This time, down the left sideline, Jackson wasn’t about to let Hilton come away with the catch, as evidenced by his clear interference on the play. The resulting penalty moved the ball up to the 50-yard line, and it only seemed like a matter of time before Indy would take advantage.

There was an eight-yard pass play from Luck to Ryan Grant, and then a couple run plays for four yards, moving the sticks. Then Luck found rookie running back Nyheim Hines to his left, who sprinted ahead to the Tennessee 18-yard line for a 20-yard gain.

Now it was Jordan Wilkins’ turn to introduce himself to the Titans.

On 1st and 10 from the 18, the Colts lined up with Luck under center, and with wide receiver Zach Pascal slightly in front of, and to the right of Wilkins, in the backfield. Hines, meanwhile, started out lined up right behind tight end Jack Doyle, who was in the slot to the left.

Hines went in motion to his right on the snap, taking Pascal — and a few defenders — with him. Luck pitched to Wilkins, who took off to the left.

The blocking on this play from this point is textbook, especially along the left side:

» First off, Quenton Nelson absolutely buries the man across from him, defensive tackle Bennie Logan. 

» Then, left tackle Anthony Castonzo does a good job getting into space to seal off linebacker Kamalei Correa off the edge. Doyle does the same nearby to Jackson.

» But the key is center Ryan Kelly. Kelly pulls to his left ahead of Wilkins and gets up to full speed quickly, and actually takes out two defenders in his wake: linebacker Jayon Brown and safety Kenny Vaccaro.

It was a footrace to the front corner of the end zone from there, and Wilkins beat safety Kevin Byard to the pylon to earn his first-career NFL touchdown, putting the Colts up 24-0 with 2:29 left in the first half.

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