JACKSONVILLE – They fought and battled back.
They also got three touchdown passes from Gardner Minshew II and a solid day from undrafted rookie James Robinson – and they got a victory in the 2020 regular-season opener.
Minshew, who threw just one incompletion in 20 attempts, threw a 22-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Keelan Cole with just under six minutes remaining to help the Jaguars to a 27-20 victory over the Indianapolis Colts in front of 14,100 at TIAA Bank Field Sunday.
The Jaguars stopped the Colts on 4th-and-4 with :44 remaining. Rookie cornerback CJ Henderson broke up a pass to wide receiver T.Y. Hilton on the play.
Minshew's touchdown pass to Cole was his third of the game. Safety Andrew Wingard's interception off Colts quarterback Philip Rivers on the ensuing series set up a 46-yard field goal by Josh Lambo.
That exchange gave the Jaguars a 27-20 lead with 2:51 remaining, and the touchdown pass to Cole gave the Jaguars their first lead of the game with 5:56 remaining.
Robinson, who played collegiately at Illinois State and who became the fourth undrafted rookie in NFL history to start Week 1, rushed for 62 yards on 16 carries in his NFL debut. He helped set up one touchdown, with Minshew throwing first-half touchdown passes to wide receivers DJ Chark Jr. and rookie Laviska Shenault Jr.
The Jaguars stayed close early partly because of two timely plays by the defense, with safety Jarrod Wilson and defensive tackle Abry Jones combining for an early goal-line stand and Henderson setting up a touchdown with his first career interception.
Minshew completed 19 of 20 passes for 173 yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions, including the first-half touchdowns to Chark and Shenault.
Rivers, making his debut as the Colts' quarterback after 16 seasons with the San Diego/Los Angeles Chargers, completed 36 of 46 passes for 363 yards and one touchdown with two interceptions.
The Jaguars registered one sack Sunday, with weakside linebacker Myles Jack sacking Jacoby Brissett in the second quarter.
Henderson intercepted Rivers in the second quarter to set up the Jaguars' first touchdown.
Step by step:
*The Colts took a 7-0 lead on the game's first possession, driving 63 yards on seven plays in just 3:18 and scoring on a 12-yard run by running back Nyheim Hines; the Colts rushed for 29 yards on the drive. Robinson rushed for 23 yards on four carries on the ensuing drive before a facemask penalty on center Brandon Linder stalled the drive. The Colts threatened to push the lead to double digits late in the first quarter, but Jones and Wilson stopped Hines on 4th-and-1 from the Jaguars 3.
*The Jaguars tied it 7-7 early in the second quarter, with Minshew throwing six yards to Chark with 10:42 remaining in the half. Henderson's interception and return to the Colts 27 set up the touchdown, with Robinson rushing three times for 21 yards. The Colts retook the lead on the ensuing series, with Rivers passing eight yards to Hines on a screen pass with 4:45 remaining in the quarter; Rivers kept the drive alive with third-down completions of 17 yards to wide receiver Parris Campbell and 14 yards to Hilton. The Jaguars tied it when Minshew passed 15 yards to Shenault with 1:38 remaining in the second quarter; Minshew completed six of six passes for 65 yards on the drive. Colts kicker Rodrigo Blankenship's 38-yard field goal with :05 remaining in the half made it 17-14, Indianapolis.
*Jaguars kicker Josh Lambo's 50-yard field goal with 3:30 remaining in the third quarter, a series that began with Blankenship's 30-yard field goal hit the left upright. A 30-yard interference penalty on Colts cornerback Xavier Rhodes covering Chark set up the score.
*Blankenship's 25-yard field goal with 9:39 remaining in the fourth quarter made it 20-17, Indianapolis. Minshew's 22-yard touchdown pass to Cole came on the ensuing series.
Injury report: Jaguars defensive end Josh Allen sustained cramps late in the third quarter; he returned. Henderson was evaluated for a concussion in the fourth quarter and returned. … Jaguars safety Josh Jones sustained a leg contusion in the fourth quarter … Safety Jarrod Wilson sustained a fourth-quarter hamstring injury and did not return.