INDIANAPOLIS —Oh, so close.
Pretty much every Colts fan knows about the powerful right leg of punter Pat McAfee — and that he's capable of making field goals from long, long distances — but his 62-yard, game-winning field goal attempt with five seconds left on the clock last Saturday fell just short, giving the Baltimore Ravens a 19-18 preseason victory at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Highlights from the Colts second preseason game against the Ravens.
The 59 minutes and 55 seconds of gameplay prior to that long field goal attempt were pretty entertaining, too, led by the 2016 debut of quarterback Andrew Luck, who completed all eight of his passes for 69 yards and efficiently got the starting offense into field goal range both times it took the field.
The Colts also had a spirited comeback, sparked by an early-third quarter interception by Winston Guy. A few plays later, a gamble on 4th and goal from the Baltimore 1-yard line paid off, as backup quarterback Scott Tolzien completed a one-yard touchdown pass to Tevaun Smith to bring the score to 14-12, Ravens.
After a fourth-quarter Baltimore field goal, it was third-string quarterback Stephen Morris' time to lead a scoring drive, culminating in a seven-yard touchdown pass to running back Trey Williams to give the Colts an 18-17 lead.
But only very briefly.
On the ensuing two-point conversion attempt, Morris saw his pass intercepted by Ravens safety Anthony Levine Sr., who took it all the way to the other end zone for the rare defensive two-point conversion, giving the lead right back to the Ravens, 19-18.
Baltimore would hang on from there after McAfee's long game-winning attempt fell short.
But it was undoubtedly a competitive game for both sides, and one that the Colts saw featured lots of growth by every participating player on the roster.
Here's the Top 10 quotes from Colts head coach Chuck Pagano and the Indianapolis players about the game:
• "This is a tough football team, they are going to play hard for 60 minutes. We gave ourselves a chance at the end to pull this one out again, but it is just hard to overcome those self-inflicted negatives so we have to go to work in cleaning that up." — Colts head coach Chuck Pagano, giving his thoughts on the game, and on the untimely penalties and mistakes that he hopes to get corrected.
• "I needed to get out there. It's like breathing, you just need more of it. It's like oxygen. We did some really good things too. All groups, all three groups and all three phases." — Colts quarterback Andrew Luck, on making his 2016 preseason debut.
• "For the most part, from a starters' standpoint, you get in, you get your plays, you make sure you're clean, you're communicating well and you're getting your fundamentals down, your technique. Then when everyone else comes in, it's a thrill for us. It's a thrill to see the young guys putting in all the work and actually applying it and having fun." — Colts inside linebacker D'Qwell Jackson, on the positives he took away from Saturday's game against the Ravens.
• "I feel it's going well, but at the end of the day, it's all about these guys in the locker room coming together. With that being said, those plays are for this team." — Colts defensive tackle T.Y. McGill, on seeing his strong preseason continue against the Ravens with a sack and another quarterback hit.
• "The biggest thing for me on the two-point conversion was in my mind I had two thoughts going through and I should have just stuck with it. Going to my receiver backside and he ran a great route and that's where the ball should of went. I think I'm going to be up all night thinking about it. It's good to get on the film and learn from the mistake." — Colts quarterback Stephen Morris, on his emotions after seeing the two-point conversion go the other way at the end of the game.
• "Good, good. First time playing with him in some action, to see how he operates the offense a little bit, get used to hearing his voice in the snap counts, his rhythm and stuff like that. As we continue to play more games we'll get used to one another and hopefully do some great things together." — Colts running back Robert Turbin, on his first in-game experience playing with quarterback Andrew Luck.
• "I wish my mom was here to see me make that play … I know she's watching over me. It meant a lot, man." Colts safety Winston Guy, on making a third-quarter interception — a timely one at that — just two weeks to the day after his mother, Renessa, had passed away.
• "Because, that is what you want to do. You don't want the call to be too complicated, because you want to play fast. You want to go out there and not think and just, they run a slant, you want to jump that slant. When they run the ball, you want all 11 guys to the ball and that allows your guys to play fast, when it is not too complicated. When a defense is not complicated it allows us to go out there and run." — Colts safety Mike Adams, on how defensive coordinator Ted Monachino's scheme of playing fast and efficient fits into his strengths.
• "We're growing. We're getting better each day — up front, and as an offense, period. We've just got to keep grinding and keep getting better each day, and come Sept. 11 when Detroit comes around, we'll be where we want to be." — Colts running back Frank Gore, who also got his first preseason action last Saturday against the Baltimore Ravens.
• "I was just trying to be a ballplayer. If I'm not getting the ball, I'm not a selfish guy — I want everybody to make plays. And if I can screen a person, then I'll do that. … I don't get to do that too often." — Colts wide receiver and returner Quan Bray, on making a huge block on an early punt play.