|Date of game: 12/28/2014
Recap: Tennessee vs. Indianapolis
Nashville, TN (SportsNetwork.com) - Andrew Luck threw a pair of touchdown passes in only one half of action, leading the AFC South champion Indianapolis Colts to a 27-10 win over the Tennessee Titans on Sunday at LP Field.
Luck finished 10-of-16 for 160 yards and set the Colts' single-season passing yardage record with 4,761 yards, surpassing Peyton Manning's previous mark of 4,700 in 2010. Matt Hasselbeck also threw a touchdown pass in the second half for the Colts (11-5), who will open the playoffs at home next weekend.
Indianapolis bounced back from a dreadful performance at Dallas last week and completed a sweep of the AFC South for a second straight year. The Colts, who managed only 229 yards in last Sunday's 42-7 loss, totaled 378 on Sunday en route to their 13th straight divisional win.
"We needed to come out and win," said Luck. "To get a victory after last week was huge."
Charlie Whitehurst threw a scoring pass in defeat for Tennessee (2-14), which closed the year with 10 straight losses in Ken Whisenhunt's first season as head coach.
"We're going to get a good pick and have a chance to get some good players in here," said Whisenhunt after the game.
The Titans managed just 192 total yards and nine first downs on Sunday, finishing their worst season since moving from Houston in 1997. The two wins were the franchise's fewest since a 2-14 record in 1994.
"We were beating ourselves (all year)," said Titans safety George Wilson. "This is definitely the toughest year I've ever had."
After a series of punts to start the game, the Colts started their second offensive series from the Tennessee 44 and needed just six plays to find the end zone. Luck was sacked and fumbled on the second play, but Hugh Thornton recovered for the Colts and Dan Herron converted 3rd-and-11 with a 26-yard reception out of the backfield to set up Luck's 7-yard scoring toss to Coby Fleener.
Luck added a 1-yard TD pass to Jack Doyle early in the second quarter immediately after he set the record on an 80-yard connection with Reggie Wayne, who made a brilliant adjustment to the ball on the right sideline and was caught from behind just before the end zone. Wayne injured his groin and didn't return.
The Titans responded with their first sustained drive of the game after Leon Washington's 52-yard kickoff return. Whitehurst capped the 47-yard march with a 6-yard touchdown pass to Kendall Wright.
Josh Cribbs followed with a 76-yard kickoff return to put the Colts at the Tennessee 27, but it led only to a 23-yard Adam Vinatieri field goal to make it 17-7 with 2:55 left in the first half.
Vinatieri was wide left with a 46-yard kick midway through the third quarter, his first miss of the season, and the Titans pulled within a touchdown on the next series when Ryan Succop booted a 31-yard field goal. Tennessee reached the Indianapolis 3-yard line after a 52-yard run by Shonn Greene on 4th-and-1, but the Titans were lucky to secure three points after recovering a pair of Whitehurst fumbles.
The Colts answered with a 26-yard Vinatieri field goal on the first play of the fourth quarter to extend the margin to 20-10 and Indianapolis cornerback Vontae Davis ripped the ball away from Tennessee's Bishop Sankey two plays later. The Colts, though, were stopped on 4th-and-1 to turn it back over on downs.
Hasselbeck threw an 8-yard TD pass to Fleener late in the fourth quarter to account for the final margin. Fleener finished with five catches for 56 yards.
"We wanted to have some momentum (for next week)," said Colts coach Chuck Pagano. "Really proud of the players and coaches. They did a tremendous job."Game Notes
Tennessee managed 142 yards on the ground, including 94 from Greene on 11
carries ... Whitehurst completed just 12-of-28 passes for 72 yards and was
sacked four times ...Vinatieri had converted each of his 29 field goal tries
this season and 35 in a row dating back to last year before the miss in the
third quarter ... Tennessee's Brett Kern tied a franchise record with a 79-
yard punt in the second quarter. Jim Norton set the mark with the Houston
Oilers in 1964.