The Colts (2-13) could have clinched the right to draft Andrew Luck in this year’s NFL draft with a loss against the Texans (10-5) last night, but Indianapolis rallied for a 19-16 victory in the final seconds.
Dan Orlovsky found Reggie Wayne on a 1-yard pass in the end zone with 19 seconds remaining to win the game and all but ruin Houston’s chances for a first-round bye in the AFC playoffs.
Wayne, whose contract is up after the season, had eight receptions for 106 yards in what could have been his finale in Indianapolis.
“I said if this is going to be the last game, I want to go out with a bang. It was great,” Wayne said. “It was a great feeling to go out. Hopefully, I’ll be back but you never know.”
Adam Vinatieri connected on four of five field-goal attempts as the Colts won for the second time in five days after starting the season 0-13. They head to Jacksonville next week for an opportunity to drop out of the Andrew Luck sweepstakes completely. St. Louis and Minnesota are the other two-win teams in the league.
For the Texans it was their second consecutive loss following a seven-game winning streak. Houston hasn’t scored more than 20 points in a game since Tyler Yates took over at quarterback. Yates was 13 of 16 for 132 yards but did not even try to stretch the field. Arian Foster gained 158 yards on 23 carries.
“We make one play offensively at the end, the game’s over,” coach Gary Kubiak said. “We make one stop at the end, the game’s over.”
And if the Texans play in the postseason like they did last night, their playoff run will be over. Quick, but certainly not painless.
Las Vegas Bowl
Kellen Moore won his 50th game as a collegiate quarterback when No. 7 Boise State thumped Arizona State, 56-24.
Moore has had better performances at the Idaho school, but he still threw for 293 yards and two touchdowns, with two interceptions and a fumble. He set school records for passing yards, touchdowns, completions and total offense, and finished fifth all-time among NCAA quarterbacks for passing yards while going 50-3 as a starter.
Doug Martin returned the opening kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown and Boise State (12-1) never looked back. Martin, who was voted the game’s MVP, rushed for 151 yards and had another touchdown.
Arizona State (6-7) scored on the second-half kickoff but never seriously threatened the Broncos despite a bowl-record 241 yards receiving by Gerell Robinson.
Kick save and a beauty: On second thought, the goalie who was tossed out of Wednesday’s match in the Netherlands for defending himself against a soccer hooligan didn’t deserve the red card he received from the referee.
The Dutch soccer authorities rescinded the red card yesterday, disagreeing with the referee’s ruling that the goalie could have walked away from the incident without retaliating.
Esteban, a goalie for AZ Alkmaar, was thrown out of Wednesday’s contest for kicking a “fan” who ran onto the field to kick him. His coach, Gert Jan Verbeek, pulled his team after the red card and the game was abandoned with Ajax ahead, 1-0.
The 19-year-old hooligan was arrested and has been handed a lifetime ban by Ajax.
Trojans keep their quarterback: Matt Barkley has decided to return for his senior year at the University of Southern California. Barkley, who had been projected as a top 10 pick in this year’s NFL draft, immediately becomes a front-runner to win the Heisman Trophy and makes USC a contender for the national championship next season.
“I am staying,” he said, “because I want to finish what I started.”
The Trojans were hit with a two-year bowl ban before the 2010 season.
The gnashing of teeth you hear is likely coming from NFL cities like Miami, where all they see is one-less franchise quarterback on the NFL market. Barkley figured to be no less than the third QB selected in the coming draft, behind Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III.
Now that’s a real Miracle on Ice: A 59-year-old woman who said she had never held a hockey stick in her life hit the shot of her life to win a new Ford F-150 truck.
Brenda Hewitt let fly from the far blue line, 114 feet away, and placed the puck into a hole only slightly wider than the puck itself. The promotion took place at a Federal Hockey League game in Massena, N.Y.
After watching Hewitt helped out to center ice, I would have given at least 10 to 1 odds against her even reaching the goal. She did better than that, though.