INDIANAPOLIS – This one had a decidedly one-sided feel.
And while the one side that was good for the Jaguars on Sunday was very, very good – for a half, anyway – the struggles were far too real on the other side.
The Jaguars forced three turnovers, and the defense harassed quarterback Andrew Luck in the first half. That kept the game close early, but with the offense struggling mightily throughout the Jaguars loss to the Indianapolis Colts, 23-3, on Sunday afternoon.
The AFC South-leading Colts improved to 7-4 in front of 64,328 at Lucas Oil Stadium, pulling away from a three-point halftime lead with touchdowns on their first two drives of the third quarter.
The Jaguars (1-10) lost a fourth consecutive game.
Trent Richardson's 1-yard touchdown run with 8:31 remaining in the third quarter gave the Colts a 13-3 lead, and Luck passed 73 yards to wide receiver T.Y. Hilton on the ensuing possession pushed the lead to 20-3.
The Colts held a 273-90 advantage in total yards at that point.
The Jaguars finished with just 194 total yards, including 88 in the second half. The Jaguars had minus-12 yards in the third quarter as the Colts pulled away.
Luck, who entered the game with 28 touchdown passes and 10 interceptions, threw for just 112 yards and no touchdowns in the first half while being sacked five times. He finished the game completing 21 of 32 passes for 253 yards with a touchdown and no interceptions. Hilton caught four passes for 122 yards and a touchdown.
The Colts rushed for 175 yards.
Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles had one of his most difficult games of the season, completing 15 of 27 passes for 146 yards and no touchdowns with an interception.
Defensive end Chris Clemons had three sacks for the Jaguars, all in the first quarter. The Jaguars had five sacks in the first half and none in the second half.
The Jaguars, who lost to the Colts 44-17 in a Week 3 game in Jacksonville after trailing 30-0 at halftime, pressured Indianapolis throughout the first half, creating havoc, sacking Luck five times and forcing three turnovers.
The Jaguars also forced five fumbles in the first half, with Clemons and the defense setting the tone and giving the Jaguars a very real chance at that point.
Clemons' first sack forced a fumble that gave the Jaguars possession, but Colts cornerback Vontae Davis intercepted Bortles two plays later and returned it to the Jaguars 21. Colts kicker Adam Vinatieri converted the first of three field goals on the ensuing possession to make it, 3-0.
A 28-yard field goal by Josh Scobee with 4:17 remaining in the first quarter made it, 3-3, and Vinatieri converted a 20-yarder with 12 seconds remaining in the half to give Indianapolis a three-point halftime lead.
The Colts' two third-quarter touchdowns pushed the lead to 17, and Vinatieri converted a 32-yard field goal early in the fourth quarter to make it 23-3.
This actually came in the first half. Though the Jaguars forced five fumbles and three turnovers, the Colts still led 6-3 at halftime because the Jaguars managed just five first downs and 104 total yards. The Jaguars had 34 yards passing at halftime. The Colts then scored on their first drive of the second half, with Richardson's one-yard touchdown run with 8:31 remaining in the second quarter giving Indianapolis a 13-3 lead.
1.Clemons had a huge first quarter with three sacks. The first was a sack/fumble on Luck that Jaguars linebacker Telvin Smith recovered at the Colts 46. That ended the Colts' first possession. …
2.Clemons ended the Colts' next possession with a sack that forced a 46-yard field goal by Vinatieri to make it Colts 3, Jaguars 0 with 10:32 remaining in the first quarter. That sack helped the Jaguars stop a drive that began at the Jaguars 21 after Davis returned an interception off Bortles. …
3.The Jaguars' defense continued to swarm late in the first quarter, with defensive end Chris Smith sacking Luck and forcing a fumble that defensive tackle Sen'Derrick Marks recovered at the Colts 13. Scobee's 28-yard field goal four plays later tied it, 3-3. …
4.Smith had two fumble recoveries in the first half. His second ended a Colts drive early in the second quarter at the Jaguars 7 and kept the score tied 3-3. …
- There wasn't much in the way of offensive highlights Sunday, but rookie wide receiver Marqise Lee turned a short reception into a 37-yard catch-and-run in the fourth quarter. The play gave the Jaguars a first down at the Colts 1. The Jaguars failed to score on the drive.
The Jaguars sustained no reported in-game injuries.
Defensive end Andre Branch (groin) and middle linebacker Jeremiah George (ankle) were declared inactive 90 minutes before kickoff. It was the fourth consecutive game missed for Branch and the second consecutive game missed for George.
First half images of the Jaguars Week 12 matchup in Indianapolis.