INDIANAPOLIS –Age is just a number listed on the roster. Ask Colts veterans Matt Hasselbeck, 40 years old, and Adam Vinatieri, 42.
Both played heroic roles Sunday in the Colts' 16-13 overtime victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Vinatieri tied a bow on the Indianapolis victory with a 27-yard field goal with 4:36 left in the overtime. It was the 25th game-winning kick of his impressive career.
"Adam is money; he's clutch," Coach Chuck Pagano said after the Colts evened their record at 2-2, moving into first place in the AFC South Division. "A first-ballot Hall of Famer, I think everybody would agree."
Vinatieri totaled three field goals in the game, opening the regulation-time scoring with a 54-yarder in the first quarter and closing it with a 32-yarder with 12:27 left in the fourth. His first-quarter field goal gave him 956 career points as a Colt, making him the top points producer in franchise history.
In the overtime, a 28-yard pass completion from Hasselbeck to Coby Fleener started the Colts' game-winning march. Then Frank Gore, who in the fourth quarter fumbled at the goal line, made amends with a 22-yard run to the Jacksonville 7-yard line.
Hasselbeck knelt down on the next play to make sure the ball was centered perfectly, and then the call went out to Vinatieri.
"Everybody just said, 'Hold on, we have No. 4. Just put this ball in the middle and he's as close to automatic as you can have,' " said Hasselbeck.
Jacksonville had a chance to win in regulation time, but Jason Myers missed a field-goal try from 53 yards in the final seconds. Myers also missed a 48-yard attempt in overtime.
For his part, Hasselbeck found out Sunday morning he would start in place of Andrew Luck, who has an injured right shoulder. Hasselbeck, who started for the 153rd time of his NFL career, admitted he got a little too worked up before kickoff.
"I got way too excited coming out of the tunnel. I was all geeked up," he said. "I couldn't hit Frank Gore to save my life on two of the easiest Pop Warner passes you could ever have."
But Hasselbeck settled down and wound up completing 30-of-47 passes for 282 yards with one touchdown and zero interceptions. He targeted Fleener for 12 passes, and the tight end caught nine for 83 yards and a score. Hasselbeck threw for T.Y. Hilton 13 times, and the wide receiver caught seven for 67 yards.
Hasselbeck's poised performance basically matched his counterpart, Jacksonville's Blake Bortles, throw for throw. Bortles finished 28-of-50 for 298 yards with a touchdown.
Said Pagano about Hasselbeck: "The guy's a true pro and winner, and I'm really glad we've got him on our football team."
The Colts have only a few days to prepare for a Thursday night game at Houston. If they hold true to their motto, they should be ready to play.
"I'm not a huge fan of coaching cliches," Hasselbeck said. "I don't think many players are. But our thing, our motto, our identity – 'one play at a time, all you got, 60 minutes, don't judge' – is legit. It works and it wins."
FIRST QUARTER (4:59 remaining)
Adam Vinatieri put the Colts on the scoreboard first with a 54-yard field goal. His kick also gave him 956 career points as a Colt, making him the top points producer in franchise history. Quarterback Matt Hasselbeck completed 6-of-8 passes for 61 yards on the Colts' drive. Colts 3, Jaguars 0.
FIRST QUARTER (2:49 remaining)
The Jaguars quickly tied the score when Jason Myers answered with a field goal from 20 yards. Quarterback Blake Bortles hit Allen Hurns with a 26-yard pass and then found Allen Robinson with a 49-yarder to set up the field goal. Colts 3, Jaguars 3.
SECOND QUARTER (11:37 remaining)
Colts running back Josh Robinson fumbled at midfield and Jacksonville's Johnathan Cyprien recovered. Four plays later, Bortles, on the run, found Hurns with an 8-yard scoring pass. Earlier, Bortles completed a 21-yarder to Clay Harbor. Myers added the extra point. Jaguars 10, Colts 3.
SECOND QUARTER (6:04 remaining)
The Colts evened the score with the help of five penalties charged to Jacksonville. Three of the flags came on third downs, providing the Colts with timely first-and-10 situations. The touchdown was a 2-yard pass from Hasselbeck to Coby Fleener. Vinatieri added the extra point.Colts 10, Jaguars 10.
SECOND QUARTER (4 seconds remaining)
Jacksonville regained the lead on a 32-yard field goal by Myers. Bortles completed six straight passes for 53 yards on the march before a couple of misfires led to the kick. Jaguars 13, Colts 10.
FOURTH QUARTER (12:27 remaining)
The Colts tied it up again, this time with a 32-yard field goal by Vinatieri. A couple of nice passing plays to T.Y. Hilton by Hasselbeck set it up. The Colts QB hit Hilton for 12 yards on the opening play of the drive and then 17 yards three plays later. Colts 13, Jaguars 13.
OVERTIME (4:36 remaining)
A 28-yard pass, Hasselbeck to Fleener, and then a 22-yard rush by Frank Gore set up the Colts' winning score. Vinatieri then connected on a 27-yard field goal.Colts 16, Jaguars 13.