Slow start dooms Titans in Indy

Indianapolis Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton (13) makes a catch for a touchdown over Tennessee Titans cornerback Perrish Cox (20) during the first half of an NFL football game in Indianapolis, Sunday, Nov. 20, 2016. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)
Indianapolis Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton (13) makes a catch for a touchdown over Tennessee Titans cornerback Perrish Cox (20) during the first half of an NFL football game in Indianapolis, Sunday, Nov. 20, 2016. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

INDIANAPOLIS (WKRN) – It’s a streak no one wants but unfortunately for the Titans, they are stuck with it. After giving up 21 points to the Colts to start the game, the two-tone blue could not recover losing 24-17 for the 11th straight time to Indianapolis on Sunday.

The Colts set the tone from their opening drive as Andrew Luck led the team down the field on an 8-play, 64 yard drive capped off by Robert Turbin’s 1-yard touchdown for a 7-0 lead.

Indianapolis kept up the scoring with two more touchdown drives as Luck found Donte Moncrief for a 2-yard touchdown to go up 14-0. T.Y. Hilton was on the next drive with a 2-yard touchdown pass to make it 21-0.

The momentum finally started to swing when Colts kicker Adam Vinatieri ended his own NFL record, 44-straight made field goals, with a miss from 42 yards.

After the miss, the Titans had new life as Marcus Mariota led the team on a 12-play, 68-yard drive finding DeMarco Murray for a 3-yard touchdown on third down to cut the Colts lead to 21-7 at halftime.

In the second half, the Titans struck again, Mariota hit Tajae Sharpe for a 34-yard touchdown to cut the Colts lead to 21-14 in the third quarter.

After the two teams exchanged field goals, the Titans had one final chance to tie the game, but on fourth and 1 from the 19-yard line, DeMarco Murray was stopped short of the first down giving the ball to the Colts.

Andrew Luck converted a 3rd and 5 to T.Y. Hilton, and the Colts took a knee to let the clock run out and get a 24-17 win.

Head Coach Mike Mularkey gave his take on how the game went.

“You can’t come into their place and spot them 21 points, but we did and we had a chance to come back in the second half and the way our guys responded, again I give our guys credit, but we can’t do that against teams in this stadium. That’s part of this process we gotta learn how to win these games and not get behind, but we know we can come from behind with anybody.”

The Titans outscored the Colts 17-3 in the second half while DeMarco Murray hit the 1,000-yard rushing mark for the season. But after the game, he said he would “rather have had the 4th and 1.”

Mariota had another solid game going 25/38 for 290 yards and two touchdowns, while Rishard Matthews led the receivers with 9 catches for 122 yards en route to his first 100-yard day with the Titans franchise.

The Titans’ 11th straight loss to the Colts is the longest active losing streak in the NFL.

The Titans drop to 5-6 with the loss. They face the Chicago Bears next week for the chance to get back to .500 at 6-6.

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