JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The Indianapolis Colts are proving to be multidimensional.
A week after stunning San Francisco with a power-running scheme, the Colts embarrassed Jacksonville with a finesse passing attack. And they played stout defense in both victories.
Andrew Luck threw two touchdown passes, Trent Richardson ran for a score and the Colts became the latest to beat the Jaguars by double digits, 37-3 Sunday.
The Colts (3-1) were a little sloppy in the first half – Luck threw interceptions on his first two drives and missed several open receivers – but it was hardly enough to made a difference against the hapless Jaguars (0-4).
"It wasn't an ideal start," Luck said. "It was more of a terrible start to the game offensively for us. ... We sort of woke up in the second half."
Indianapolis led 20-3 at halftime – Jacksonville has been outscored 75-8 in the first half this season – and made it a laugher with consecutive touchdown drives in the third quarter.
Luck found Coby Fleener for a 31-yard score, a play in which even Fleener was surprised he was so wide open, and then connected with Reggie Wayne in the back of the end zone from 5 yards. That made it 34-3 and sent many of the Jaguars faithful heading to the exits. The Colts had outgained the Jaguars 363-70 at that point.
Luck completed 22 of 36 passes for 260 yards, with two TDs and an interception. His other pick was negated by an offside penalty.
Wayne finished with five catches for 100 yards. Richardson ran 20 times for 60 yards. Fleener caught five passes for 77 yards.
Defensively, Robert Mathis had three sacks and cornerback Vontae Davis intercepted a pass and tipped another one that teammate Darius Butler caught and returned 41 yards for a score and a 10-3 lead.
"We don't have enough (game balls) to go around anymore," coach Chuck Pagano said.
The home town had nothing to celebrate.
Blaine Gabbert, who missed the past two games because of a hand injury, threw three interceptions. All of them bounced off receivers' hands.
Maurice Jones-Drew ran 13 times for 23 yards – against the team he has his most career yards against.
Tight end Marcedes Lewis made his season debut, but ended up back in street clothes after just a few plays. Lewis re-injured his left calf, which kept him sidelined most of the preseason and the first three games.
Jacksonville is 0-4 for the third time in franchise history. The team has never started 0-5.
"It's got to stop," Gabbert said. "It doesn't sit well with anyone in this locker room. If anybody says they are satisfied, that's a lie. ... Like I said, it is a long year and things didn't go the way we wanted in the first four weeks, but we still have a chance to do some good things."
Aside from the lopsided result, here are five things to take from the game:
JAGUARS LACK TALENT: There's only one conclusion to draw about Jacksonville: the team lacks talent on both sides of the ball. The Jaguars have lost 12 of their past 19 games by double digits – 11 of those by 16 or more points in a league where the majority of games are decided by a touchdown or less.
COLTS CRUISE: The Colts finished with 437 yards of offense despite playing without leading rusher Ahmad Bradshaw (neck) and center Samson Satele (elbow). They also were without fullback Stanley Havili (ankle) for part of the game. They overcame those injuries with relative ease, racking up 26 first downs and converting 6 of 13 third downs.
TEBOW TALK: Jaguars coach Gus Bradley insisted afterward that he's sticking with Gabbert: "I'm standing strong with Blaine," Bradley said. Some fans would like to see a change – and not to backup Chad Henne. Not only is there a group picketing for Jacksonville to sign free agent quarterback Tim Tebow every Monday, but someone paid to fly a banner around EverBank Field that read, "Tebow, why not?"
MATHIS NEARS MILESTONE: Mathis' three sacks left him one shy of becoming the 30th player in NFL history with 100 career sacks. "It's a team game. We have to pick each other up, and we had it going," Mathis said. "I am very proud of our guys. We just have to keep it going. We lean on each other. We are on a mission."
SHORTS STALLS: A week after dropping a would-be touchdown at Seattle – the Jaguars turned the ball over on the next play – Jaguars receiver Cecil Shorts III had more problems catching the ball. Shorts bobbled two passes that wound up as interceptions, including one returned for a touchdown and a 10-3 lead. "It's frustrating," he said. "I didn't have the day I wanted, but bad days happen. That's just part of the game."
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