Final

Titans 3

(3-9, 1-5 away)

Colts 35

(12-0, 6-0 home)

1:00 PM ET, December 4, 2005

 

1 2 3 4 T
TEN 0 3 0 03
IND 7 7 14 735

Top Performers

Passing: S. McNair (TEN) - 220 YDS

Rushing: E. James (IND) - 28 CAR, 107 YDS, 1 TD

Receiving: B. Troupe (TEN) - 5 REC, 67 YDS

Manning, Harrison, James set records; Colts roll to 12-0

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- The Indianapolis Colts are making perfection look easier every week.

It was over when ...
The game started. The Colts didn't overlook the Titans or suffer a letdown after last week's physical win against the Steelers. Tennessee couldn't get anything going on offense and lost its sixth straight against Indy.
Game ball goes to ...
It's a four-way tie. Peyton Manning threw his 25th TD pass this season, extending his own NFL record to eight straight seasons with at least 25. Edgerrin James became the third-fastest player in league history to 9,000 yards. Marvin Harrison became the 12th player in league history to top 12,000 yards receiving. And the defense was smothering, holding the Titans to just one field goal.
ESPN's take ...
Sean Salisbury The 16-0 talk shouldn't be a distraction at all for the Colts. This is a veteran team that should be ready to deal with this and even if the Colts don't, it's not like they haven't created this situation. Heck, they are the ones who keep on winning games! I think they should go for the undefeated record and the Super Bowl because it's possible for this team to accomplish both.
-- Sean Salisbury

Now they'll have a chance to keep their historic quest going in the playoffs, too.

With the Triplets in sync and the defense producing another physically dominant performance Sunday, Tennessee never had a chance as the Colts rolled to a 35-3 victory to clinch a playoff spot and remain the NFL's only unbeaten team.

"Anything that comes along with winning, you accept it," two-time MVP Peyton Manning said.

The Colts are the fifth team in league history to go 12-0 but must wait until next week at Jacksonville for a chance to wrap up their third straight AFC South title and first-round bye in the playoffs.

If the past few games are any indication, that's only a matter of time.

Indianapolis has won seven of its last nine by at least 17 points, averaging more than 35 points. The Colts even routed Tennessee on a day Manning threw only 17 passes, the second-fewest of his NFL career. He threw two passes in last year's season finale at Denver.

But the latest victory epitomized how Indy continues to win -- by overcoming anything opponents try.

On Sunday, the Titans (3-9) wanted to play keep-away. It didn't work.

Manning completed 13-of-17 passes for 187 yards and three touchdowns, giving him a near-perfect passer rating of 151.2 and extending his NFL record to eight straight seasons with at least 25 TD passes.

Edgerrin James carried 28 times for 107 yards, becoming the third-fastest player in league history to top 9,000 yards. In 93 games, James has rushed for 9,067 yards. Eric Dickerson did it in 82 games; Jim Brown did it in 88.

Marvin Harrison caught four passes for 61 yards and his first reception, a 36-yarder on the Colts' opening drive, made Harrison the 12th player in league history to top 12,000 yards receiving. His 10-yard TD catch on the Colts' opening possession was the 92nd between Manning and Harrison, also extending that duo's NFL record.

If anyone thought Indy would have a letdown after an emotional victory Monday night against Pittsburgh, the Colts' answer was resounding: Not a chance.

They limited the Titans to 40 yards rushing, sacked Steve McNair twice and Billy Volek twice and even knocked McNair out for four plays in the third quarter with a bruised right shin.

"I'm very proud of this team, coming back after Monday night and playing like that, a complete game," coach Tony Dungy said. "We had that focus, we wanted to get in the playoffs."

Now the focus turns to other things such as what the Colts hope will be a run toward history. No team has gone undefeated since the 1972 Miami Dolphins.

And each week, it seems, the Colts are converting skeptics into believers.

"If they continue to stay healthy, with what they do on offense and with the speed they have on defense, they're going to have a chance," Titans coach Jeff Fisher said after losing his sixth straight against the Colts.

The young Titans did little right.

A botched trick play to Pacman Jones knocked the Titans out of field-goal range and set up the Colts' second score. Fisher gambled by going on fourth down routinely, failing four of five times; in the waning moments when the Titans were trying to salvage a score, the Colts stopped them at the goal line.

It was that kind of day.

McNair was 22-of-33 for 220 yards and fumbled when Dwight Freeney sacked him in the fourth quarter. Larry Tripplett grabbed the ball out of the air and went 60 yards for a touchdown.

"If we had played the perfect game, we could have won," said McNair, the NFL's former co-MVP.

But the Colts wouldn't allow it.

Manning connected with Harrison on the Colts' first series for a 7-0 lead and then took advantage of good field position after Rob Bironas pushed a 51-yard field goal wide right. Eventually, Manning hooked up with Bryan Fletcher on a 13-yard TD pass to make it 14-0.

Tennessee's only score came on Bironas' 24-yard field goal with 29 seconds left in the half.

Manning opened the third quarter with a 27-yard TD pass to Reggie Wayne, and James' 2-yard TD run with 1:28 left in the third assured the Colts of one more week of perfection.

"I know how hard it is to win nine games, 10 games, 11 games," Manning said. "To win 12 games is extremely hard, but to win 12 in a row ... You don't have time to pat yourself on the back as a team."

Game notes


Dungy won his 100th regular-season game Sunday. ... The Colts extended their franchise-record home winning streak to 11 and have now won 20 of their last 21 regular-season games. ... Kyle Vanden Bosch, who came into the game second in the NFL in sacks, had two wiped out by Tennessee penalties.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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Team Stat Comparison

 
TEN
IND
1st Downs1721
Passing 1st downs
138
Rushing 1st downs
310
1st downs from penalties
13
3rd down efficiency
2-123-6
4th down efficiency
1-51-1
Total Plays6348
Total Yards260292
Yards per play4.16.1
Total Drives911
Passing207187
Comp-Att
26-3913-17
Yards per pass
4.711.0
Interceptions thrown
00
Sacks-Yards Lost
5-430-0
Rushing53105
Rushing Attempts
1931
Yards per rush
2.83.4
Red Zone (Made-Att)0-20-3
Penalties7-355-33
Turnovers11
Fumbles lost
11
Interceptions thrown
00
Defensive / Special Teams TDs01
Possession32:5727:03

Passing Leaders

TENC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
McNair22/332206.7002-20
Volek4/6305.0002-10
INDC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
Manning13/1718711.0300-0

Rushing Leaders

TENCARYDSAVGTDLG
Brown11322.9010
Henry6183.006
INDCARYDSAVGTDLG
James281073.8122
Manning2-1-0.500

Receiving Leaders

TENRECYDSAVGTDLG
Troupe56713.4023
Scaife6538.8014
INDRECYDSAVGTDLG
Harrison46115.3136
Wayne35016.7127

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERTENIND
indTD8:14Marvin Harrison, 10 yd pass from Peyton Manning (Mike Vanderjagt kick is good)
Drive info: 9 plays, 80 yds, 3:42
07
SECOND QUARTERTENIND
indTD4:15Bryan Fletcher, 13 yd pass from Peyton Manning (Mike Vanderjagt kick is good)
Drive info: 14 plays, 59 yds, 5:37
014
tenFG0:33Rob Bironas 16 yd Field Goal
Drive info: 10 plays, 49 yds, 3:29
314
THIRD QUARTERTENIND
indTD9:46Reggie Wayne, 27 yd pass from Peyton Manning (Mike Vanderjagt kick is good)
Drive info: 10 plays, 72 yds, 5:09
321
indTD1:36Edgerrin James, 2 yd run (Mike Vanderjagt kick is good)
Drive info: 8 plays, 64 yds, 4:01
328
FOURTH QUARTERTENIND
indTD11:56Larry Tripplett, 60 yd fumble return (Mike Vanderjagt kick is good)
Drive info: 1 plays, 60 yds, 2:21
335