Originally written on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 11/19/14
  The biggest surprise in the Indianapolis Colts’ game against the Houston Texans on Sunday isn’t the fact that they lost. In fact, it was so expected that the shock would have been if they hadn’t lost. No, the biggest surprise has to be how close they were to almost making another miracle comeback in a season that has seen so many already. Trailing 20-3 after a Pat McAfee’s punt was blocked by Texans linebacker Bryan Braman in the 2nd quarter, things looked pretty much out of reach. The Colts had been outmanned and out willed the entire first half. Andrew Luck, to that point, had completed only 3 of 10 pass attempts, had been sacked 3 times, and running back Mewelde Moore – just recently re-signed to the team after the Donald Brown and Robert Hughes injuries – fumbled on the 1 yard line on a drive that should have ended in a touchdown. Then The Block happened, and Braman rumbled the blocked kick 8 yards for a touchdown with 1:46 left to play in the first half. Things looked grim indeed. Then, on the ensuing Colts drive, Luck hit fellow rookie tight end Dwayne Allen (who Braman had flown by during the punt block) for a quick 13 yard gain. On the very next play, with the Texans dominating front bringing heat, Luck stepped up in to pocket, giving enough time for T.Y Hilton to break free in the secondary. Luck hit Hilton perfectly in stride for a 61 yard touchdown to bring the Colts back into striking distance with a 20-10 deficit at the end of the first half. The Texans held the Colts to a three-and-out in the first possession of the third quarter, and on their first drive of the half took the ball 78 yards for a 27-yard field goal to take a 23-10 lead. Indianapolis responded in kind, taking their next possession down the field with a healthy dose of running back Vick Ballard. Ballard carried the ball five times for 60 yards (12.0 average), including a 23-yard run to the Houston 8-yard line. Andrew Luck then found Allen for an 8-yard touchdown pass to bring the game to a 23-17 difference heading into the 4th quarter. At this point, Colts fans had to have felt pretty good, seeing this 6 times already in the season. Texans fans, knowing that the Colts have the most 4th quarter comeback wins in the league, had to have been nervous. But alas, things were not to be for Indy. The Colts offense didn’t get further than their own 45 yard line the rest of the way. The Texans were able to add two more field goals and run the clock down on Arian Foster’s strong fourth quarter, and the Texans clinched their second consecutive AFC South title with the final score of 29-17. For both teams, the biggest issues were penalties. In the game, the Colts were flagged 8 times for 79 yards, and the Texans 9 times for 69 yards. The Colts also continue to struggle with offensive line play. The pressure was constant on Luck for the third straight game, and for the third straight game Luck’s completion percentage was under 50% (48% to be exact), and only passed for 186 yards. Houston defensive end J.J. Watt was all over the field, totaling 10 tackles, including 3 Luck sacks. But there is good to point out from this game as well. Luck scored two touchdowns through the air and did not have a single interception (though there were two or three throws that definitely COULD have been intercepted), his first game without a pick since week 9 against Miami. And despite the completion percentage, Luck’s QB rating was 95.6, his best since Miami as well. Another strong showing came from Ballard, who logged in his first 100+ yard game against the league’s #2 ranked run defense. Ballard has been playing stronger and better as the season goes, and if he stays on this clip, it would be hard to see Donald Brown still on the team next year unless it was solely in a back-up position. And finally, the defense should be proud of its outing. It held the vaunted Texans offense to just one touchdown the entire game, and only 9 points in the second half. And, up until the fourth quarter when Houston was trying to run down clock, they had held Foster in check for most of the game (side note: I should mention however, that Foster did finish the game with 165 yards on the ground).  But, as is usually the case, the younger, more inexperienced team made more mistakes and fewer plays. When that happens, it’s near impossible to win the game. Though the Colts have done just that all season, sometimes your Luck runs out (see what I did there?). Indianapolis next meets the woeful Kansas City Chiefs with a chance to lock up the most unlikely of playoff spots. It’s simple: Win, you’re in, and the magic continues. Follow me on Twitter @IrishColt1
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Robert Griffin III benched by Redskins for McCoy

Lovie Smith: 2-9 Bucs are still in playoff contention

UCLA QB Brett Hundley likely to enter NFL draft

Bills will return to Ralph Wilson Stadium for Sunday's game

Miller to Oregon transfer rumor originates on Reddit

Valencia FC ditches bat logo amidst DC Comics challenge

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Paul Pierce: Celtics' Big Three was like 'Holy Trinity'

Cubs reportedly offer Jon Lester more than $135 million

Colin Kaepernick: Jim Harbaugh will be back in 2015

Jeremy Maclin not happy with Riley Cooper’s contract remark

Broncos reportedly waive kicker McManus, sign Connor Barth

Report: Browns not committed to Brian Hoyer long-term

Rockies pitcher takes shot at former Astros pitcher

WATCH: Paul Pierce signs autograph during game

Jeremy Hill asks great question about alma mater LSU

NBA rookie rankings after 1st month of 2014-15 season

Statistic about Derrick Rose, Jimmy Butler very revealing

Aaron Rodgers blasts those who accused him of trolling Vikings

The century's 10 most one-sided college football rivalries

WATCH: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of NBA's first month

Sherman mocks NFL media policies in press conference

Why Packers' offense continues to evolve despite success

'Fire Idzik' billboard updated with suggestion for Jets owner

Watt buys pizza, shows gratitude to Houston firefighters, cops

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Report: McCoy to start over RG3

Braxton Miller headed to Oregon?

10 most one-sided college football rivalries

Pierce: C's Big Three like 'Holy Trinity'

Maclin unhappy with Cooper comments

Post-Week 13 CFB Playoff projection

What has Masai Ujiri built in Toronto?

How L.A. should replace Hanley

Lester, Red Sox still talking contract

Why each NFL team should be thankful

Could Kentucky beat the 76ers?

Greatest college football rivalries

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.