INDIANAPOLIS — Not too many cheers for Indianapolis Colts fans after Sunday’s 45-26 home loss to the Tennessee Titans became a blowout in a lopsided first half.
After both offenses opened with scores on back-to-back possessions to make it 14-all, the Titans kept scoring and the Colts didn’t in a 35-14 first half. The Titans (8-3) rode workhorse running back Derrick Henry’s 178 yards rushing and three TDs to take a one-game AFC South Division lead.
Let’s start with accentuating positives for the Colts (7-4).
— Wide receiver T.Y. Hilton caught four passes for 81 yards, including a long of 50 yards, and scored his first touchdown of the season. Hilton also surpassed 9,000 career receiving yards, the fourth in franchise history to reach that plateau (Marvin Harrison, Reggie Wayne, Raymond Berry).
— Running back Nyheim Hines had eight receptions for 66 yards. The receptions lead the team. With his first two receptions, he passed Wayne (144) for the seventh-most catches by a Colts player in his first three seasons. Hines also passed Edgerrin James (149) for the second-most receptions for a Colts player in the first three seasons.
— Colts quarterback Philip Rivers tied Charles Woodson (235) for the ninth-most starts in NFL history.
— Backup quarterback Jacoby Brissett ran for two TDs in short yardage.
— Tight end Trey Burton caught a TD pass for the second consecutive game.
— The Colts were four-for-four (100 percent) in scoring TDs in the red zone.
— Linebacker Darius Leonard had a game-high 14 total tackles, including 10 solos, with one tackle for loss, one sack, and one pass defensed. Leonard’s 18th career game with 10 or more tackles tied Jerrell Freeman for the third-most games with double-digit tackles in team history since 1987.
— Defensive tackle Tyquan Lewis had five solo tackles, one for loss, and one pass defensed. The solo tackles are a career high, as are the total tackles.
— With his first extra point, kicker Rodrigo Blankenship tied Raul Allegre (11) for the second-most consecutive games with a score by a rookie in team history.
— Punter Rigoberto Sanchez had five punts for 254 yards, a 50.8-yard average, with one downed inside the 20-yard line.
— The Colts’ second-ranked defense allowed Henry to rush for 140 yards and three TDs in the first half.
— Titans wide receiver A.J. Brown burned the secondary on a crossing route for a 69-yard TD pass play, then later returned an onside kick 42 yards for the game’s final touchdown.
— The Titans dominated time of possession, 35:33-24:27.
— Colts cornerback Rock Ya-Sin committed too costly penalties on third down that extended Titans drives resulting in TDs. The second, for illegal hands to the face, negated a Colts sack that would have forced a Titans field-goal attempt.
— In addition to Brown’s 69-yard reception, the Colts allowed two other chunk plays as Titans wide receiver Corey Davis had a 37-yard catch and Henry ran for 31 yards. Davis also had a 21-yard reception.
— The Colts rushed for just 56 yards on 21 carries (2.7 ypc). The Titans rushed for 229 yards on 45 carries (5.1 ypc).
— The Titans 45 points scored, as well as 35 in the first half, were the most allowed by the Colts this season.
— Rivers was intercepted once and should have had a second, but the pick-six was dropped.
— The Colts were just 5-of-13 (38 percent) on third down.
— The Titans were four-of-five (80 percent) in scoring TDs in the red zone.
— Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill was untouched on a 1-yard TD keeper.
— The Colts failed on a pass and a run in two-point conversion attempts.
— The Colts had just two quarterback hits, and the only sack was without a tackle as Leonard was the closest defender when Tannehill ran out of bounds behind the line of scrimmage.
— In the first half, the Titans had 346 total yards to the Colts’ 161.
— Colts rookie wide receiver Michael Pittman Jr. was targeted nine times and had just two catches for 28 yards with two drops.
— On the Colts’ final offensive play, facing fourth-and-10 with the game decided, Brissett took a sack instead of trying a desperation pass.