Another quarterback, another victory for the Colts against the Titans.
Jacoby Brissett became the latest Indianapolis quarterback to top Tennessee, throwing a 4-yard touchdown pass to T.Y. Hilton with 4:38 left to lead the Colts to a 19-17 victory Sunday in the Titans’ home opener.
Brissett had come up empty for Indianapolis against Tennessee, losing both games he started against the Titans in 2017. After Andrew Luck retired with a perfect 11-0 record against the Titans, Brissett picked up right where Luck left off. He passed for 146 yards and three TDs.
The Colts (1-1) also sacked Marcus Mariota four times on a day when Adam Vinatieri, the NFL’s oldest player and career scoring leader, missed two extra points. It was Indianapolis’ 14th win in its last 16 games against Tennessee overall.
The Titans (1-1) missed their chance for payback against Indianapolis after losing the 2018 regular-season finale, along with a playoff berth on the line for the winner. They haven’t started 2-0 since 2008 when they won their first 10 games and last won the AFC South.
The Titans had one last chance, getting the ball back with 1:07 left. But Mariota threw incomplete to rookie A.J. Brown on fourth-and-2 with 11 seconds left.
Brissett put the Colts up 7-0 with a 3-yard shovel pass to Eric Ebron in the first quarter, and he capped a 12-play drive in the second with a 12-yard TD pass to Parris Campbell. Vinatieri missed the extra point, leaving the Colts with a 13-7 lead.
Tennessee grabbed a 17-13 lead when Derrick Henry ran for a 1-yard TD and Cairo Santos kicked a 49-yard field goal in the third. The Titans scored their first TD when Mariota tossed a 1-yard TD pass to lineman David Quessenberry, who had the first start of his NFL career delayed by a fight with cancer.
Santos, who was signed to fill in for Ryan Succop, missed a 45-yarder wide left in the fourth.
Vinatieri has missed an extra point in consecutive games to start the season. A week ago, the NFL’s career scoring leader missed an extra point and a pair of field goals in the same game for the first time in his career. With a chance to put the Colts up 14-7 midway through the second quarter, the 46-year-old Vinatieri pulled the extra point wide left. After the go-ahead TD, Vinatieri clanked the extra point off the right upright.
The Titans honored a big piece of their past at halftime, becoming the first NFL team to retire either No. 9 or No. 27 – the numbers of the late Steve McNair and Eddie George. Mechelle McNair and her two sons, McNair’s mother and brothers attended along with George and his sons. The Titans turned it into a family affair with Taj George of Sisters With Voices, SWV, singing the national anthem.
Colts CB Pierre Desir hurt a knee in the third quarter at the end of a 25-yard catch by Titans receiver Corey Davis. He did not return.
Colts: Home opener hosting Atlanta.
Titans: Visit Jacksonville on Thursday night.