INDIANAPOLIS — This one feels good.
After two weeks of potential comeback victories to open the season were snatched away from them, the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday were able to grab hold of the lead late and keep it this time, defeating the San Diego Chargers, 26-22, for their first win of 2016.
Down 22-20 with 1:17 to play, quarterback Andrew Luck found No. 1 wide receiver T.Y. Hilton on a quick slant play, who took it 63 yards to the house for the eventual game-winning touchdown.
Then, on the Chargers' second-to-last drive of the game, the Indianapolis defense shut the door, as Clayton Geathers was able to strip the ball from San Diego rookie tight end Hunter Henry's grip, and veteran safety Mike Adams fell on it to give their team the win.
The Colts (1-2) are feeling all sorts of good vibes as they prepare for their long trip overseas to London, the site of this Sunday's AFC South Divisional matchup against the Jacksonville Jaguars (0-3).
But before the team completely moves on to that showdown across the pond, let's check out the Top 10 quotes from the Colts' victory over the Chargers:
• "There's nothing like winning — it's just what the doctor ordered." — Colts head coach Chuck Pagano, on his team winning its first game of the season after being unable to shut the door on comeback attempts in the first two games of the season.
• "Yeah— relief, excited, happy. I wish I wasn't so petty and cared so much about winning and losing. It makes you feel better, it does. It's addicting." — Colts quarterback Andrew Luck, asked about his feelings after getting win No. 1 on the year.
• "Yeah, you don't want to dig that hole 0-3. I'm going to be honest with you we needed this. Now we're going to start letting it snowball effect. Now we want to just keep the ball rolling. Just keep it going like that. Defense played well. Offense played well. We played well on all three aspects, and that's what we expect. We expect a lot from ourselves." — Colts safety Mike Adams, on if Sunday's game against the Chargers was a "must win."
• "We knew that we had a talented team. Starting out 0-2, yeah it was very doom and gloom for the media and you guys, but not in the locker room. We knew the type of team that we had and we just wanted to go out there and continue to progress and get better, week in and week out. That's what we were able to do today and we got the win." — Colts tight end Dwayne Allen, on how Sunday's win can boost the team after two tough losses.
• "That's definitely a big time difference. Obviously one win away from 2-2, once you're back there you are kind of back in the hunt. That's all we need to do, just keep winning games. Every game is a must-win in the NFL, that's the NFL." — Colts tackle Anthony Castonzo, on the difference between being 1-2 and 0-3.
• "It was just a regular whip route. He got away from me a little bit. My head was like, 'Make a play,' so I just went for the strip. Go for the punch. Go for the punch. He wasn't expecting it, so it worked out in our favor." — Colts safety Clayton Geathers, on what led to his game-sealing forced fumble in the fourth quarter.
• "Oh man. Hey, he's a beast. One of the best at his position. Him and (Andrew) Luck have been playing together since they came in so they have that chemistry. I'm just happy we got the win. He made that big play." — Colts running back Frank Gore, on how he would describe the playmaking ability of T.Y. Hilton.
• "It wasn't frustrating; I just wasn't giving my team a chance to win. They look for me to make big plays and I wasn't doing that the first two games and I told them, I'm going to be the difference-maker today. I said earlier in the week, I want to put it on me, put the game on me and that's what I did today." — Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton, on his feelings after a slow start to the season, and then breaking out against the Chargers on Sunday.
• "You just put so much time and preparation just to get your body ready for something. Then practice, classroom, weight room and so the outcome is you always want to win. We were able to do that today, and hopefully it's just something to start. Continue to get this momentum, and keep it rolling." — Colts outside linebacker Erik Walden, on what Sunday's win means for the team.
• "We just made those plays this time. The difference between winning and losing in this league is paper-thin. Detroit, we never made the plays. Today, we made them.'' — Colts outside linebacker Robert Mathis, on the difference between coming out with a victory against the Chargers vs. the Week 1 loss to the Lions.