By Teresa M. Walker/The Associated Press
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Andrew Luck came through against the Tennessee Titans just like the Colts quarterback he replaced used to.
The rookie who took over for Peyton Manning threw a 16-yard touchdown pass to Vick Ballard (Mississippi State) 4:49 into overtime and the surprising Indianapolis Colts beat the Titans 19-13 on Sunday.
The Colts (4-3) have beaten Tennessee in seven of eight overall and seven of the past 10 in Nashville. Manning was in charge of the Colts before moving to the Denver Broncos this season.
Luck lead the Colts on a pair 80-yard touchdown drives. The No. 1 overall draft pick set up Delone Carter’s 1-yard TD run that tied it at 13 with 3:24 left in the fourth quarter.
In overtime, Ballard capped the drive, taking a screen pass and going up the left side where the rookie got his feet knocked out from underneath him as the Titans tried to get him out of bounds. Ballard crossed the goal line upside down with his head hitting the pylon for the TD. Officials reviewed the play before ruling it a score.
The Titans (3-5) had won two in a row, but had a couple of chances to win this one in regulation.
After Carter’s TD run, Tennessee moved down the field and Matt Hasselbeck overthrew tight end Jared Cook on what would have been a touchdown. Then Hasselbeck was incomplete before the Titans punted back to the Colts with 56 seconds left.
Tennessee thought it had recovered a fumble that would allow Rob Bironas to win the game in regulation. Colts fullback Dwayne Allen was stripped of the ball after a catch, and Titans cornerback Alterraun Verner recovered at the Colts 28. Officials ruled Allen down due, and the Colts kneeled down to run out the final seconds to reach overtime.
The Colts won the toss, took the ball and never gave it back.
Donald Brown, who had eight carries for 41 yards in regulation, got the ball on the first six plays of overtime and ran for 39 yards. Facing third-and-8 from the Titans 36, Luck stood in the pocket and found Reggie Wayne for a 20-yard completion. A play later, Luck tossed the screen, and Ballard did the rest to finish off the victory.
Indianapolis outgained Tennessee 457-339, and Luck was 26 of 38 for 297 yards. Adam Vinatieri also kicked two field goals.
The Titans led most of the game, tied only at 3-3 in the first quarter and late in regulation. Hasselbeck was 22 of 29 for 236 yards with a TD pass that was the 200th of his career making him the 32nd player in NFL history to reach that mark. Chris Johnson ran for 99 yards, and Rob Bironas kicked two field goals while missing a 45-yarder wide right.
But the Titans came in giving up more points than any team in the NFL, and they just couldn’t make the stop to give their offense one last chance. They sacked Luck twice. Michael Griffin got an interception and also blocked a 37-yard field goal at the end of the first half.
It wasn’t enough.
The Titans pressured Luck repeatedly in their first shot at their division rival’s new quarterback. Luck had a couple passes batted down but found open receivers time and again.
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