(Reuters) - The Indianapolis Colts produced a blistering opening to the second half to mount a 30-27 comeback win over the Tennessee Titans on Thursday, opening up a healthy three-game lead in the AFC South.
Facing a 17-6 deficit after two early rushing touchdowns to Tennessee’s Chris Johnson, the Colts scored twice early in the third quarter to storm to a 20-17 lead and were able to turn the momentum shift into victory.
Colts’ running back Donald Brown essentially sealed the win with three minutes remaining with an 11-yard rushing touchdown, his second touchdown of the game to give them a 30-20 lead.
Tennessee wide-receiver Delanie Walker scored on a 19-yard reception inside the final two minutes but the Titans could not regather an onside kick to try and set up an opportunity to win the game.
The Colts now have a 7-3 record, three games clear of the second placed Titans (4-6) in the AFC South.
Quarterback Andrew Luck was 23-from-36 for 232 yards without throwing for a score but he also rushed for 31 yards and a touchdown.
Johnson scored from 30 and seven yards in the opening quarter to give his side a 14-0 lead but after running 80 yards in the first half was held to six yards in the second.
“Starting out like that is something we are all too familiar with and it is something we have to work on and get corrected but we are happy to get the win regardless,” Colts’ tight end Coby Fleener said.
”Ultimately it comes down to doing the right thing on the right plays. It was great play calling by our offensive staff and great job by our defense to hold them at the end there.
“Our main priority is to win the division and this is a right step in that direction.”
Brown, who had 80 yards from 14 carries with two touchdowns, scored early in the second half to start the comeback.
Luck then was able to capitalize after Titan Devon Wylie fumbled the kickoff, running in to score just two plays later.
Titans’ quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick was 22-of-28 for 222 yards and a touchdown.
Reporting by Ben Everill in Los Angeles; Editing by Greg Stutchbury