Colts take down Giants with Luck on their side
The Indianapolis Colts weren’t going to have a hangover from last week’s defeat.
Andrew Luck wouldn’t allow it.
Luck threw for four touchdowns and the Colts’ defense kept Eli Manning and the Giants off balance Monday night in Indianapolis’ 40-24 romp.
With his franchise-record seventh consecutive 300-yard game, Luck led the Colts (6-3) to a lopsided win one week after a 51-34 loss to Pittsburgh. Unlike the way Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger toyed with their defense in that game, the Colts didn’t let Manning get going in handing New York (3-5) its third straight defeat.
Luck hit Coby Fleener for a 32-yard touchdown in the first half. He had scoring throws of 31 yards to T.Y. Hilton, 40 yards to Reggie Wayne and 2 yards to Dwayne Allen in the third period.
Adam Vinatieri added four field goals and is perfect on 20 tries this year.
It was the eighth time this season that Luck had thrown for more than 300 yards and the 17th time in his three pro seasons. He was 25 for 46 for 354 yards.
Giants first-round pick Odell Beckham Jr. had 156 yards on eight receptions, by far his best game. Manning threw for 359 yards and two touchdowns, but most of that came with the game decided.
Luck seemed to look for Fleener on every pass in the first half. That well-established combination - they played together at Stanford before joining the Colts in 2012 - paid off on consecutive passes for the game’s first touchdown.
But the Colts probably caught a break on one of those plays. Fleener was awarded a 21-yard gain, although video replays showed he dropped the ball. Giants Coach Tom Coughlin threw the challenge flag too late, seconds before Fleener was uncovered down the right side for a 32-yard touchdown.
Meanwhile, New York was plagued by drops by its receivers, an inability to sustain a ground game, and enough pressure on Manning to force long or high throws that had no chance to be caught. Indy led 16-3 at the half thanks to Fleener’s touchdown and field goals by Vinatieri, who added a 43-yarder in the fourth quarter.
The Colts held the Giants to 143 yards in the opening half, and then staged an 84-yard drive to Hilton’s touchdown on the first series of the third quarter.
New York matched that drive to finally get into the end zone. Beckham got loose for a 59-yard gain on a pass from Manning, and then Andre Williams broke two tackles for a 24-yard reception. Williams surged in from the 1 to make it 23-10.
Luck simply picked New York apart on the next series to go over 300 yards in the air once again. He beat a blitz to hit former Giants running back Ahmad Bradshaw for 22 yards, did the same to hit Fleener for 11 on third down, and then connected with Wayne on a 40-yard play down the left sideline. AP
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