Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky
The shape of the game said Dolphins.
Peyton Manning, of course, said something different.
The Colts' dead-tired defense gave up big rushing yards and way too many third-down conversions. They earned minimal possession time -- just 14:53 -- for the reigning MVP.
But what he got was enough, and Miami paid for failing to find enough touchdowns.
Colts 27, Dolphins 23.
The Titans and Texans were rooting hard for the Dolphins and hoping they could wind up in decent shape in the division. The Colts instead got to 2-0 thanks to Manning’s quick throw to Pierre Garcon in the face of a big blitz.
The young, speedy receiver has gotten a lot of attention as part of a duo taking on a bigger role for the post-Marvin Harrison Colts. He is even more important with Anthony Gonzalez out as the result of a knee injury suffered in the opener.
Picking up blocks from the other young receiver, Austin Collie, as well as Jeff Saturday and Mike Pollak, on the perfect play for the perfect moment, Garcon scored his first NFL touchdown from 48 yards.
And when the Colts defense survived one last Miami drive -- a too-slow 2-minute drill for a team lacking explosion -- Indy improved to 2-0 and moved a game up on Houston and two up on Tennessee and Jacksonville.