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September 16, 2013

No late magic

Dolphins deny Colts' late drive to secure road win

INDIANAPOLIS — It was bound to happen sooner or later. One of these Indianapolis Colts’ comeback attempts was destined to fail.

The reckoning came Sunday at Lucas Oil Stadium, when Andrew Luck failed to score on two fourth-quarter drives and the Miami Dolphins held on for a 24-20 victory.

“You got to give them credit,” Indianapolis defensive end Cory Redding said. “They made more plays than we did. We had a lot of opportunities to make plays. We shot ourselves in the foot a whole bunch of times, but we went out there and tried to fix our mistakes and keep playing. At the end of the day, they made more plays and they came in here and got the win.”

There was an odd feeling in the Colts’ locker room afterward. This was just the second time in 12 games with Luck under center that Indianapolis failed to win a contest decided by seven points or less.

And it came just before the start of the most brutal stretch of the schedule. The Colts (1-1) travel to San Francisco next week and also will play Seattle, Denver and Houston over the next six weeks.

It’s likely the Miami defeat will haunt this team for awhile. If so, it will sting even more because of the many missed opportunities.

“We didn’t finish,” safety LaRon Landry said. “It’s a team effort, offense, defense and special teams. We got to build together.”

The game seemed to be building toward a familiar finish when Luck and the offense took possession at their own 14-yard line trailing by four points with 3:57 remaining in the game.

The second-year quarterback needed just six plays to bring up a first down at the Dolphins’ 23-yard line with 1:50 to play, but the drive stalled there.

Luck threw incomplete to T.Y. Hilton in the end zone on first down. A miscommunication with tight end Coby Fleener led to a pass that was nearly intercepted by Miami’s Chris Clemons on second down, and Dolphins cornerback Nolan Carroll batted the ball away from Griff Whalen on third down.

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