Colts improve to 10-0 with road win over Ravens

BALTIMORE -- The unbeaten Indianapolis Colts sidestepped another potential obstacle in their march toward NFL history.

The Colts kept Baltimore out of the end zone Sunday and got the go-ahead field goal from former Ravens kicker Matt Stover in a 17-15 victory, their 19th straight win over two seasons.

Wyche: Ravens blow opportunity

The Ravens were hot. Radioactive hot, as in angry; not efficient, effective or dominant. In a game they had to win Sunday, they lost. In a turn of the cliché, they wanted it less than the Colts didn't want it. **More ...**

Indianapolis (10-0) overcame three turnovers, including two interceptions by Peyton Manning. The Colts' 19-game streak is the second-longest in NFL history behind a 21-game run by the New England Patriots (2006-08). In addition, their eight consecutive 10-win seasons ranks second behind San Francisco's 16 (1983-98).

Those records, or thoughts of an unbeaten season, are not overly important to the Colts.

"It's really not on anybody's minds. At least not on my mind," Manning said. "We're relieved we got this win. Obviously, it's a great team effort."

The defense forced a field goal after Baltimore got a first-and-goal at the 1 in the fourth quarter, and linebacker Gary Brackett sealed the win with an interception in the closing minutes.

"We are definitely a bend-but-not-break defense," Brackett said. "They drove a couple of times on us, but we held them to field goals."

Baltimore's last chance ended when Ed Reed fumbled on a punt return with 17 seconds left.

Manning did his part by throwing a touchdown pass and directing a 60-yard drive before Stover -- much to the dismay of the Ravens and their fans -- kicked a 25-yard field goal with 7:02 to go. Baltimore (5-5) did not re-sign Stover over the summer, and the move has proven costly.

On NFL Replay
NFL Replay will re-air the Indianapolis Colts' 17-15 win over the Baltimore Ravens on Wednesday, Nov. 25 at 9:30 p.m. ET.

Billy Cundiff made field goals of 46, 44, 38, 36 and 20 yards in his debut with the Ravens. But he also was wide right on a 30-yard attempt that would have given Baltimore a 15-14 lead in the third quarter.

Cundiff tied Stover's team record for field goals in a game. He was signed Wednesday after Baltimore cut an ineffective Steve Hauschka -- who originally replaced Stover.

After Stover's field goal made it 17-15, Brackett picked off Joe Flacco's pass at the Indianapolis 13 with 2:42 remaining.

"I made a dumb play and threw an interception in a tight situation," Flacco said.

Baltimore's last gasp ended when Ed Reed fumbled on a punt return with 17 seconds left.

Indianapolis has won its last four games by a combined 10 points. The Colts usually rely on Manning, who fashioned a huge comeback against New England last week, and nearly everyone contributed to this one.

"To be able to come out of this game with a win is huge," rookie coach Jim Caldwell said. "We're not going to ever sneeze at being 10-0, but we're doing it by a small margin these days."

Four downs



» The Colts have won 19 straight regular-season games (second longest win streak in NFL history).

» The Colts are 5-0 on the road this season. Their nine straight road wins dating back to last season is the longest streak in franchise history.

» Dallas Clark made his 321st career reception, passing John Mackey for most in franchise history by a tight end.

» Ravens QB Joe Flacco has gone three games without a touchdown pass for the first time in his career.

Manning went 22 for 31 for 299 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions. The Colts' other turnover was a fumble by tight end Tom Santi at the Baltimore 4.

Taking advantage of the Colts' injury-depleted defensive backfield, Flacco went 23 for 35 for 256 yards. But he couldn't get Baltimore into the end zone, and that proved costly when the Ravens had to kick a field goal in the fourth quarter after getting a first down at the Indianapolis 1.

"It's frustrating. It's first-and-1 from the 1, you have to put it in," center Matt Birk said. "It's just that simple. I could talk about it for an hour, but it doesn't get any simpler than that."

Manning threw for 192 yards and a touchdown to help Indianapolis take a 14-12 halftime lead.

The Colts moved 87 yards in seven plays after the opening kickoff. A 66-yard completion from Manning to Pierre Garcon set up a 3-yard, one-handed TD catch by tight end Dallas Clark.

Baltimore's Lardarius Webb fumbled the ensuing kickoff, and officials gave the ball to Indianapolis. But the call was overturned following a challenge by Ravens coach John Harbaugh, and Baltimore got a field goal out of the drive.

Interceptions by Dawan Landry and Reed set up field goals by the Ravens, but Joseph Addai put Indianapolis back in front with a 5-yard touchdown run.

Notes: Indianapolis has won seven straight over Baltimore, including a playoff game in which the Colts failed to score a TD. ... The Ravens have lost five of seven after a 3-0 start. ... Baltimore LB Terrell Suggs (knee) was inactive, ending his run of consecutive games at 105.

Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.