Andrew Luck’s furious comeback gives Colts a big win in Detroit

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Andrew Luck may be a rookie, but he runs a two-minute drill like a veteran.

Heck, he runs a two-minute drill like a Hall of Famer.

Luck led the Colts on a stunning comeback on Sunday in Detroit, taking a game that the Lions appeared to have in the bag and turning it into an amazing 35-33 come-from-behind win. Although the Lions’ defensive line was drilling Luck all day, and the Lions appeared to have the game in hand when they took a 33-21 lead midway through the fourth quarter, Luck was simply amazing at the end of the game, and on the final play of the fourth quarter, he scrambled out of the pocket to avoid a sack and found Donnie Avery for a 14-yard touchdown.

Overall, Luck was 24-of-54 for 391 yards, with four touchdowns and three interceptions. For most of the game the Lions’ defense played well against Luck (Ndamukong Suh was particularly tough, providing constant pressure), but in the end Luck showed his mettle.

It’s a near-certainty that the 8-4 Colts will earn one of the AFC’s two wild card berths. And if the 4-8 Lions had any playoff hopes remaining, those hopes can now be erased.

For the Lions, it’s disappointing to lose a game in which wide receiver Calvin Johnson had a career-high 13 catches, and his 171 yards put him on pace to break the NFL’s all-time single-season receiving yardage record, set by Jerry Rice in 1995. But that’s the kind of team the Lions have been this season: They have talented players, but that talent hasn’t added up to being a good team.

The Colts, on the other hand, are a playoff team. Everyone said Luck was the most NFL-ready passer to enter the NFL since his Indianapolis predecessor, Peyton Manning. It turns out that Luck is even better than advertised.

100 responses to “Andrew Luck’s furious comeback gives Colts a big win in Detroit

  1. Man us Colts fans are spoiled, off the top of my head Colts-Bucs MNF, Colts-Pats 06 AFC Title Game, 08 Colts-Texans, and the 4th and 2 game, this one is up there with all of those.

  2. RGIII is gonna be great, but there’s a reason it was called Suck for Luck. Not his best day with the picks, but when it matters he’s already about as good as they come.

  3. Amazing game! Luck made some bad mistakes today, but wow… the kid puts it all out there when the game is on the line. Great comeback and can’t wait to see what happens in the playoffs!

  4. With 9pt lead Linehan was basically kneeling down with those run plays late in the game, terrible play calling offense and defense. Corky from life goes on could have called better plays

  5. That’s what the true No.1 draft pick does! Not a Colts fan at all, but living where I do I am going to see this kid play a lot of games over the next decade, and will take particular pleasure in watching him destroy TN.

  6. Detroit’s moment in the sun was short-lived.

    They are back to being NFL cellar dwellers again.

    And will be for years to come…..

  7. Thanks for a fair write up. This one was a heartbreaker as a lions fan but you could see it coming from a mile away. Good game though, pretty well called by the refs.

  8. Lions are exhibit A that character matters. All talent. No heart, no discipline, just like their coach. Going nowhere fast.

  9. Wow…

    Colts in a rebuilding year, 8-4

    Cowboys who should be taking a shot at the title, 5-6

    Thanks Jerry….


  10. I’m sorry, but this isn’t about Luck, it’s about the Lions. Luck threw 3 picks, should’ve been 5.

    This is about the Lions trying to go into prevent offense with 6 minutes left despite a horrible OL and running game averaging less than 3ypc. Then we put the safeties 15-20yards deep in prevent mode, our highly over-rated DL couldn’t get any pressure, and we gave up big chunks of yards.

    This is about horrible coaching from the Lions. Schwartz, Gunther, and Linehan all need to be fired. Mayhew too, but he’s got at least 6yrs of bad teams left since the Ford family owns the team.

  11. Give Luck and the Colts their dues but once again the Lions find a way to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.
    Honestly their like watching a train wreck in slow motion… something needs to change.

  12. This time last year the talk in Indy was all about if they were losing on purpose and why is the GM not even trying to add talent. Now who cares, they have maybe the best young QB in the league. Good lesson, do whats best for your franchise whether its perceived as right or wrong

  13. Give me Andrew Luck any day over that overhyped fraud, Robert Griffin, in Washington. Luck is a winner, Griffin is a bona fide loser.

    Griffin can’t run a two minute offense in less than four minutes and Luck commands the field.

    Colts have themselves a great quarterback for the future and Washington has a one year wonder that can’t even win big games.

  14. Unless you’re a fan of one of their rivals, I don’t know how you can not love this team. Young, fun and exciting and never out of it (well, except when they played the Patriots).

    Throw in the Chuck Strong story, and you gotta love what’s going on with Indy this year.

  15. Luck does two things: he makes the mistakes we expect all rookie QBs to make, and he makes all the plays we expect 8-yr veterans to make. What a talent.

  16. thejjtrain says: Dec 2, 2012 4:42 PM

    Best Clutch Rookie QB ever.

    To the 5 (at the time) that gave this a thumbs down, who would you choose as a better rookie?

    Luck has 8 wins on a team that had 2 the year before.

    Elway? Peyton? Marino? Brady?

    Elway 4-6 7/14 TD/INT
    Peyton 3-13 26/28
    Marino 7-2 20/6
    Brady 11-3 18/12 (second year, however)

    Montana started 8 games his 1st two seasons and went 2-6 16-9

    Luck is 8-4 at a 17/14

    Ben Roethlisberger is probably better than Luck his rookie year. 13-3 with a 17/11 and 5 4thQtr comeback wins.

    Anyone else that played better in their rookie year?

  17. thanks for losing me my pickem league again lions you freaking clowns. You guys are the Arty Piscano of the NFL. For the non Casino movie fans, the lions could eff up a cup of coffee…

  18. 4th quarter comebacks is one of the lamest stats ever. Situational. His team had to comeback because he was terribad.

  19. This kid is fire. I hope he causes some noise in the playoffs. Not a Colts fan, but how could you not be happy for this team right now. They are playing with passion.

  20. In no way do I think the Colts could go into Houston and win a play-off game…

    But if they sneak in on the wild card, they are definitely a team that Houston would not feel comfortable about facing.

  21. Luck is the real deal. No doubt. Lions are not.

    And I wish the Skins had the Colts schedule. Would be talking about both top 2 picks playing in the playoffs right about now. Oh well, Griffin has been a joy to watch regardless.

  22. @ dapell….you’re mostly right. Prevent defense rarely works. But I’ve never seen prevent offense AND defense win a game. Horrible play calling.
    If the Lions had taken care of business, the Colts wouldn’t have been in position to pull off the win at the end of the game. That being said, Andrew Luck showed incredible poise for a rookie QB and made the plays necessary to win.

  23. Luck also has garbage on offense compared to what Detroit has. If we had Luck instead of Stafford we would be a playoff team too, and a super deadly offense. This is a real franchise QB, not to mention he gets paid way less than Stafford too.

    It’s all about timing and strategy choices that separates a playoff team from a total disappointment, and the Lions continue to fail at the decision making end of this sport time and time again in a variety of areas.

    Until we start thinking smarter, we can’t win with regularity.

  24. It’s called equilibrium, the Colts organization is rising to its familiar level of success while the Lions are returning to that place that we recognize here with such distaste. 9-14 in their last 23 games, slinking back into the sludge that is their heritage. Time to start rethinking the whole thing, from the top down. Mayhew put the clunky machine together, a junky jalopy with shiny rims and a Bose stereo system and Schwartz can rev up the engine but can’t figure out how to keep the thing from running out of gas or veering into the ditches. A 5-11 finish is the best case scenario and then another off season of uncertainty and another top ten draft pick that someone else will be coaching in 2014.

  25. “Give me Andrew Luck any day over that overhyped fraud, Robert Griffin, in Washington. Luck is a winner, Griffin is a bona fide loser.

    Griffin can’t run a two minute offense in less than four minutes and Luck commands the field.

    Colts have themselves a great quarterback for the future and Washington has a one year wonder that can’t even win big games.”


    Ummm, Luck is pretty darned good….

    But if the Redskins ever quit playing fantasy football with their roster and build around RGIII…

    He is gonna be pretty damn good also

    And that’s coming from a Cowboys fan

  26. Wow, amazing comeback; I thought the Lions were home free. Great season for Colts fans, nutcracker of a season for the Lions.

  27. Anyone that says, or even thinks that Luck is better than RG3 is ……. A racist. Period. Why? Ask Obama.

  28. Time for the lions to fire the whole coaching staff and get people in there that know how to coach and manage the talent on this team.

    Call bill cowher.

  29. Luck is just going to get better and better and that’s a scary thought.
    And the Lions absolutely need to fire the entire staff. It’s beyond obvious they are over-matched every Sunday. (Thursdays and Mondays too)

  30. What’s with all the Luck vs RG3 BS as a skins fan, it looks to me both teams got keepers. These guys are the anti-Lienart and anti-Young.

  31. What happened, Suh??? Your team stinks, and your dirty plays/kicks/stomps are part of the stench. For the record…you would NEVER be allowed to join our team here in Houston.

  32. I love all these people that call for the Grudens and Cowhers of the world to come save their team….

    They already got a ring.

    Why go through all that headache trying to fix somebody else’s problems….

    Especially when you can sit in a both, earning millions pointing out other’s problems

  33. YET ANOTHER team that only needed one off year to become good again. Took the pathetic Texans 10 loser years to get there. LOL

  34. taintedlombardis says: Dec 2, 2012 5:22 PM

    4th quarter comebacks is one of the lamest stats ever. Situational. His team had to comeback because he was terribad.
    taintedlombardis phrased it “terribadly”, but actually has a good point. Luck played a great game, especially in the fourth quarter, no one can argue that, but 4th quarter comebacks are a pretty stupid statistic because of their situational nature.

    While it’s a different case altogether when a quarterback is let down by a garbage defense or an amazing playmaker on the opposing offense, what happened today was that Luck dug himself into a hole through rookie mistakes, and then had to dig himself out through superstar veteran caliber play at the end of the game. The rookie mistakes early don’t cancel out the superstar play at the end, but neither does the superstar play at the end cancel out the rookie mistakes at the beginning.

    Point being, that while Luck is, without question, a clutch quarterback and an up-and-coming superstar, calling this one of the greatest quarterbacking performances ever because he overcame a deficit that was a direct result of his own turnovers is a little bit over the top.

    In short, Luck should not be defined by his interceptions nor by his clutch 4th quarter performance, but by the big win for the Colts. Because mistakes or not, that’s what Luck is at the end of the day: a winner.

  35. Luck is having a great season. Any questions about him have been answered, far as I can see. I’m not a Colts fan but it’s great to see them rally as a team in their situation. Luck has done a fantastic job.

  36. randygnyc says: Dec 2, 2012 5:48 PM

    Anyone that says, or even thinks that Luck is better than RG3 is ……. A racist. Period. Why? Ask Obama.
    As a black man from DC, I think I have more right than anybody to say that is the stupidest thing I have ever read on this site.

  37. The Colts won – Luck had another below average game by most QBs standards – another multiple interception game and below 50% completion – and yet somehow the Colts won. When I was watching him he simply made some flat out bad decisions – and on the Brazil TD his eyes were burning in holes in the recievers back from the snap – he didn’t look at the other side of the field – against a decent defense/defender either the safety would have moved across when he saw Brazil essentially stood alone on the 5 yard line or the CB would have responded to the fact Brazil had got so far behind him – (and yes Brazil essentially did end up standing still as luck rolled out of trouble-but locked on Brazil all the way)….. man Luck by name lucky by nature. I just see no growth in Luck since he came to the NFL – He was an exceptional talent in college- but I still think he has topped out (which was my concern in the draft if the colts turned heal and took Griffin, leaving the Skins with Luck) – the mistakes he is making in week 13 are pretty much the same mistakes he made in week 1…and time will tell if they can be changed. I watched every snap Luck took today and I came away very unimpressed. Perhaps it was just a bad day for him – not sure? For every decent throw he had there was 2 or 3 ugly ones. 3 picks (and two more that should have been along with a fumble that he was fortunate to get back) isn’t a great day. Kudos for the come back win however which is really all that matters in the end. But I can’t see Luck getting any weekly awards from his play today.

    Im not into the bashing Luck to make RGIII better, Im just stating my opinion. Im sure Luck will develop into a great QB and has shown signs of that this year but again I was surprised by what I saw today.

    Based on what I saw today from luck and from the stats/highlights from Wilson, Id say he [Wilson] deserves it [ROTW] over Luck at this point.

    Wilson = 23/37 293 yds TD =2 INT = 0 Rating = 104.9
    Luck = 24/54!! 372 yds TD =4 INT = 3 Rating = 70.8

    Bears Defense is superior to that of the Lions as well…
    RGIII has to play tommorow so well see. As for the post about RGIII being a overhyped fraud please go and watch the games. He’s in discussion about being league MVP, has won the ROTW 5 times, top 5 in QB passing efficiency and as thrown 8 TD’s in two games. I’m not a Skins fan but from my observation this Kids a baller and will keep defensive coordinators up at night. Luck is good but RGIII great.

  38. Face it. The fans who don’t have Luck on their team are haters. People seem to forget that he is a rookie leading a team that was 2-14 the season before with virtually the same mediocre defense. Badger him about his mistakes? really? As a rookie QB? has a rookie QB thrown 5 picks with 0 TDs in one game? No, but a 12- year veteran has. He’s a winner. Being the first 1st overall QB in common draft history to get 8+ wins says so.

  39. Lioncubs doing what they do best. Always entertainingly finding ways to loose. All that talent and nothing to show for it. Thanks for securing last place in NFC North. I don’t fell quite as bad about the rebuilding Vikes owing 3rd now.

  40. I was lucky enough to be able to see the waning moments of this game and I was quite impressed. Even my wife who’s a Saints fan and is quite new to the game of football said it was a good game. We all know Griffin gets all the attention but it is really quite something what both Luck and Wilson have accomplished, so far, early in their careers.

    Good for Luck and the Colts.

  41. Remember when everyone wanted to burn Irsay in effigy for dumping Manning? Manning maybe doing much better than everyone thought but it will only last a year or two more. Luck has made the team competitive again and will keep doing it for a decade or more.

    I guess Irsay isn’t as stupid as he makes himself look every time he opens his mouth/twitter account, after all.

  42. Yea because the vikings have a great future riding that one trick pony in adrian peterson..poor guys getting ran right into the ground.

  43. Is it just me, or do the Lions seem to find a way to blow leads on a consistent basis?

    How do you lose a 10+ point lead with a couple minutes left in a game? Ridiculous.

  44. rg3andout says:
    Dec 2, 2012 4:51 PM
    Luck is the real deal!!!!! rg3 who LOL , us colts fans got the real QB of this draft 8 wins, and still breaking rookie records, go colts!!!


    Interception records!!!!

  45. Did any of you haters WATCH the game? Probably not since it was a regional telecast. Luck was harassed all day by Suh, Avril, and that Detroit D-line (they are stout)…that Colts line is beyond terrible! Luck was knocked down about 45 times, sacked a few…And that was with Detroit dropping back 7 almost all day. They only needed to rush 4, that’s how bad the Colts line is at pass-blocking. Yes he forced some throws and made some mistakes, but he was clutch when it counted. AFTER being killed all day. The Colts really need to hit the FA market hard this offseason for O-line help, or this kid is gonna get killed out there.

  46. Texans fans better pray their team goes to the Super Bowl and wins this year.. they have like a 2 month window to win before Luck becomes the new Manning for that division.

  47. Fire Scott Linehan for the lousy play calling that has been going on all year, today’s 2nd half was inexcusable. Lions should have put up 50 on that awful defense. Indy is the worst 8 win team i’ve ever seen.

  48. When you ask your QB to throw 50+ passes a game a lot of things can happen and more times then not it will be bad things. If your QB is a rookie and playing on the road against one of the best defensive lines in the NFL then you have got to think there will be quite a few mistakes made. When Andrew Luck is that rookie QB making his rookie mistakes, the Colts will still have a real chance to win the game. Throw all the stats out the window and look at the won/loss record because that is all that matters. If Luck is able to guide the completly revamped Colts to the playoffs this year it will be nothing short of amazing.

  49. With all due respect, Andrew Luck threw 3 picks and, at least, 2 more were dropped.

    The Lions coaches, gift-wrapped that game for Luck and the Colts. And to his credit, he gladly accepted.

  50. 2ndaryinsanity says:
    Dec 2, 2012 6:06 PM
    What happened, Suh??? Your team stinks, and your dirty plays/kicks/stomps are part of the stench. For the record…you would NEVER be allowed to join our team here in Houston.
    You’re a complete moron if you don’t think the Houston Texans would gobble up Suh in a heartbeat. Despite the coaching incompetence that is the Detroit Lions, Suh was absolutely fierce today. He and the D-Line, deserved much better.

  51. Was rooting for the Lions in this one and couldn’t help feeling a rush of sympathy for Matt Stafford as the Colts scored with four seconds remaining. The guy had to watch his Bulldogs blow it on offense in that situation in yesterday’s SEC Championship … then watch his Lions lose it on defense in a deja vu moment today. Even as a Tide fan, I thought fate was being pretty cold to the guy.

  52. Somebody on this message board is actually comparing Andrew Luck and Russell Wilson. Wilson is not in Luck’s league now nor will he ever be going forward.

  53. @indywilson40 yeah I’m comparing Wilson and Luck. How can you not? You are acting like Luck is the best quarterback in the history of the NFL. Today Luck played the Lions. The Lions have written the book on how to lose games. Wilson on the other hand went into Chicago and led the Seahawks on 2 gaming winning drives against one of the NFL’s best defenses.

  54. This is the first Colts win in recent weeks where the opposing fans haven’t blamed the refs for protecting Andrew Luck. Maybe it was the 5 sacks and countless hits to the mouth? How frustrating it must be to t off on a rookie qb only for him to dust himself off and fire td after td?

  55. The Colts playing a “last-place schedule” is really paying off. This is the reason NO TEAM should have any excuses for not putting together successful seasons at least once in a while.

  56. To the 5 (at the time) that gave this a thumbs down, who would you choose as a better rookie?

    Luck has 8 wins on a team that had 2 the year before.

    Elway? Peyton? Marino? Brady?

    Elway 4-6 7/14 TD/INT
    Peyton 3-13 26/28
    Marino 7-2 20/6
    Brady 11-3 18/12 (second year, however)

    Montana started 8 games his 1st two seasons and went 2-6 16-9

    Luck is 8-4 at a 17/14

    Ben Roethlisberger is probably better than Luck his rookie year. 13-3 with a 17/11 and 5 4thQtr comeback wins.

    RGIII 5-6 16tds-4ints. 642 rushing yds 6tds. Not too shabby. But neither have done what Dan Marino did. And piss on Big Ben, he rode the Bus and the Steel Curtain to that Super Bowl, hell, they won in spite of Ben.

  57. skins are really pitiful, “last place schedule” last thing i remember was they are all NFL teams, no matter what their record is, colts got their man, and the sad skins go their fraud, ooops i mean man

  58. Colts fans!


    before we return to reality and let logic rule.

    A few things I have observed.

    1. Yes it was a great comeback win, but it was the Lions (losers of three straight BEFORE this game) who are an absolute MESS.
    2. Luck left several plays on the field yesterday, including missing a wide open Fleener on third down to throw to the adjacent, yet double covered Avery instead. We punted.
    3. Luck’s deep ball is STILL HORRIBLE. Save for the TD to Brazil (which was a product of bad defense), this guy seems to lack the ability to throw an accurate pass of over 30 yards in the air. The overthrow INT while throwing to a wide open Hilton was HORRIBLE.
    4. The Lions actually had Luck figured out. Playing the short passing lanes and forcing Luck to try and beat them deep worked for three and a half quarters.. which is scary because their defense isn’t great.
    5. Luck did NOT complete 50% of his passes and still threw 3 INT against the aforementioned ‘not great’ Lions D. We’ll never be able to compete against playoff caliber teams with Luck turning the ball over at this clip. 16 INT in 12 games is also NOT good.
    6. This no name Colts TEAM defense is playing inspired football. The same team that went 2-14 with Painter is 8-4 with Luck playing average at best. The fact that they only allowed 3 points off 3 Luck turnovers bears a mention.
    7. Luck misses far too many easy passes even when he has plenty of time. Completing less than 50% of your passes becomes even less impressive when those passes are generally short, relatively easy to complete passes in a QB friendly offense.
    8. We need more Delone Carter and Less Donald Brown

    This being said, I am ENAMORED with this win and it is one of the most exciting Colts regular season victories EVER! But if all we are looking at is a cameo appearance in the playoffs, we are not going to get the level of draft talent we need to ‘build the monster’, and that to me is more important for the long term success of the team.

    Go Colts

  59. Who said we are just looking for a cameo come playoff time? This team has moved on way past that type of thinking. Last years Giants team showed us that all you need to do is get hot at the right time and good things can happen.
    Keep pounding the rock. Go Blue.

    AL1 is your rookie of the year.

  60. Dude lit up my Pack…. Colts aren’t even all that talented – Kid is just that good…. that’s what a good QB does, carry “meh” sort of teams and lifting them to victories.

  61. @ bobzilla1001

    The Colts playing a “last-place schedule” is really paying off

    What reality are you living in?

    Colts@Chicago – 9/9
    Minnesota@Colts – 9/16
    Green Bay@Colts – 10/07
    Colts@NYJ – 10/14
    Colts@Tennesee – 10/28
    Colts@New England – 11/18
    Tennesee@Colts – 12/9
    Colts@Houston – 12/16
    Houston@Colts – 12/30

  62. So many people are completely clueless on how NFL scheduling works. A team’s record only determines two games a year. One of those games for the Colts was the Browns game, the other has not happened yet, as it’s the Chiefs game in week 16. The other 14 games are determined years in advance and have nothing to do with previous records.

    As for the games they’ve played, the AFC South is playing the NFC North this year and the Colts are 3-1 against the best division in football.

  63. Washstnative, Luck has the 4th best QBR in the league, a much better guage of what a quarterback does for his team. Luck is 8-4 with a roster full of rookies and rejects. Put Rusell Wilson on the Colts and we’re 4-8. You have a choice between Luck or Wilson: who do you take? 32 out of 32 NFL gm’s take Luck. Case closed.

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