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Indianapolis Colts send Tennessee Titans to the ropes

Two weeks after Around The Leaguedeclared the AFC South in the Indianapolis Colts' favor, coach Chuck Pagano and his troops can rest easy.

On the strength of quarterback Andrew Luck's legs and a defense that forced Tennessee quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick into four turnovers, the Colts held on for a 22-14 victory over the Titans.

With four games to go, the Colts hold a three-game lead as well as the tiebreaker advantage. If the Titans can't knock off the Broncos in Denver next week, the division race is over.

Here's what we learned in Sunday's game at Lucas Oil Stadium:

  1. For the second time in as many matchups between these two teams, the difference in the game was Luck's scrambling ability. Holding the ball too long while waiting for his receivers to get open, Luck took five sacks in the first three and a half quarters. With a 15-14 lead in the fourth quarter, Luck engineered a statement drive highlighted by first-down scrambles of eight and 24 yards. Once Luck began leaving the pocket to escape pressure, it finally opened up running lanes for running back Donald Brown.
  1. Forty-six of Brown's 52 rushing yards came on the fourth-quarter drive that culminated in the game-sealing touchdown. For the bulk of the game, Colts offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton's beleaguered power-rushing attack continued to look like a myth. Running back Trent Richardson's 12-yard run on a draw play was one of his most impressive of the season. It was a rare display of speed and decisiveness.
  1. Titans defensive tackle Jurrell Casey spent more time than Richardson in the Colts' backfield. He hit Luck three times, sacked him once and had two tackles for a loss -- including a snuff-out of an end around. Have fun in Honolulu, Jurrell.
  1. Titans running back Chris Johnson was more impressive than the box score might indicate. This was one of his best performances of the season, making defenders miss in the open field and finishing off runs and receptions with vigor. The Titans' total of 162 rushing yards was their third-highest of the season.
  1. Indianapolis wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey will never be confused with Anquan Boldin at the point of the catch. DHB had another bad drop and managed to corral just one of five targets. The Colts might have to consider benching him for rookie Da'Rick Rogers, who drew a 26-yard pass interference penalty in his first action of the season.
  1. Kendall Wright is on pace for 95 receptions and 1,120 yards, as well as the third-most yards after the catch in the NFL. He's the best player on the Titans' offense.
  1. The Titans suffered a big blow to their passing attack when tight end Delanie Walker was knocked out with a first-half concussion.

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