Gut reactions: Colts crumble in epic fashion, lose to Vikings 39-36 in overtime

It’s the worst track in NFL history. In 102 years of NFL football, no team had ever come from behind trailing by 33 points — until Saturday. The Minnesota Vikings trailed the Indianapolis Colts at halftime 33-0 and managed to earn a 39-36 victory in overtime.


Yes, that caption you are reading is 100% real. The Colts, in fact, led at halftime 33-0. Everything was going their way. Indy had played its best half of the season by far. Every unit was a vital contributor and helped the Colts achieve such a lead. Cornerback Dallis Flowers started the game with a 49-yard punt return, which would turn into an opening field goal for Indy. The next three possessions resulted in scores for Indy. The first was a blocked punt, the second was a fumble and eventual score by running back Deon Jackson, and the third was a field goal after Minnesota returned it on downs.

The mistakes of the Vikings kept happening. Trailing 20-0, Minnesota attempted a fake punt which failed and led to another field goal. A few possessions later, Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins ​​threw a pick six to safety Julian Blackmon. Before you can blink, the Colts finally went up 33-0.

The Colts were poised for their biggest upset victory this season. But the Vikings had other ideas. After the Colts moved up to a 36-0 lead early in the third quarter, Minnesota slowly began to cut Indianapolis’ lead and hit three straight touchdowns to get back into the game. The Colts failed to score a single point in the fourth quarter and were outscored 39-3 in the second half. As quickly as they went 33-0, Indy found themselves tied at 36 with 2:15 left in regulation.

The Vikings would eventually find (somehow) a way to win in overtime 39-36, officially erasing a 33-point deficit and crushing any tiny glimpse of playoff hope the Colts might have had. . Just two weeks after Indianapolis slumped in the fourth quarter against the Dallas Cowboys and were outscored 33-0 in the fourth quarter on prime time, they slumped again against the Minnesota Vikings and find themselves not only eliminated from the playoffs for a second straight season, but on the wrong side of NFL history.


As terrible as Saturday’s game slump was for the Indianapolis Colts, let’s briefly focus on how they managed to take a 33-0 lead. Each unit played a huge role in Indy’s hot start. The special teams unit started strong with a 49-yard kickoff return to give the Colts great field position. Bubba Ventrone’s unit blocked and returned a punt for a JoJo Domann touchdown on Vikings possession, giving the Colts a 10-0 lead.

On the very next drive, cornerback Isaiah Rodgers recovered a fumble that was forced by linebacker Zaire Franklin. Indy’s fumble recovery eventually led to another touchdown by running back Deon Jackson and a 17-0 lead early in the first half. Ventrone’s special teams unit came back with another key save on a false punt attempt, leading to three more points and a 20-0 for Indy. Later in the second quarter, safety Julian Blackmon intercepted quarterback Kirk Cousins ​​for a touchdown and gave the Colts a 30-0 lead.

It’s a shame Saturday’s game wasn’t marked by the Colts having full control early on and putting in their best all-three performance all season long. Instead, this game will be remembered as an embarrassing loss and historic meltdown for the franchise as a whole. This is the story of Indianapolis’ 2022 season. A season that will be remembered for all the slumps and inability to finish games that ultimately cost them a chance to make the playoffs for a second straight year.

At this point, those next three games don’t make much sense to the fans, not after Saturday’s terrible end for another game. The 4-9-1 Indianapolis Colts will be sitting at home watching the playoffs from their couches, which is where they deserve to be after such a disappointing season.

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