Redskins

Andrew Luck-led Colts rally to beat Lions 35-33

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Andrew Luck-led Colts rally to beat Lions 35-33

DETROIT (AP) Andrew Luck scrambled a bit to his right, saw nobody open in the end zone and decided to take his chances.

He flipped the ball to Donnie Avery and hoped his 5-foot-11 receiver could win a race to the end zone.

``I had no choice but to score,'' Avery said. ``It was the slowest 11 yards that I ever felt like I ran.''

It may have felt like it took forever, but Avery crossed the goal line standing up on the final play, giving Indianapolis a 35-33 win over Detroit on Sunday. The Colts scored two touchdowns in the final 2:39 to hand the Lions another excruciating loss.

``Some teams find ways to win,'' Indianapolis interim coach Bruce Arian said. ``Others don't.''

With the final seconds ticking away and the ball at the Detroit 14, Luck took the snap, moved up in the pocket and tossed a short pass to Avery, who made the catch around the 10. With Detroit's secondary focused on covering receivers in the end zone, Avery was scamper in.

``You always hesitate throwing the ball not in the end zone, for fear of the clock running out with a guy inbounds,'' Luck said. ``Took the calculated risk that Donnie could get there in the end zone, and he did.''

Luck has won more games (eight) than any rookie quarterback drafted No. 1 overall in the Super Bowl era.

The Colts (8-4) stayed in control of the AFC wild-card race by winning for the sixth time in seven games. Luck helped them move a step closer toward a 10th playoff berth in 11 seasons, this time without Peyton Manning.

Luck also threw a last-minute touchdown pass in October to beat Green Bay. His transition from Stanford to the NFL has looked pretty smooth so far.

Detroit, on the other hand, has regressed this season after an exciting playoff appearance a year ago. The Lions (4-8) became the first team since at least 1983 to lose three straight games - all at home - after leading each with 2:00 remaining in regulation, according to STATS, LLC.

The Lions are the third team since at least 1940 to lose three in a row - all at home - after leading each in the fourth quarter.

Detroit led 33-21 when Luck threw a 42-yard touchdown pass to LaVon Brazill with 2:39 left. On the ensuing possession, the Lions were facing third-and-5 near midfield and called a run, hoping to drain the clock if they didn't gain enough yards.

Mikel Leshoure was stopped, and punter Nick Harris failed to pin the Colts back. His 25-yard effort gave Indianapolis a manageable situation - the ball at its own 25 with 1:07 remaining.

``Terrible,'' Lions coach Jim Schwartz said. ``We had a chance to give them a long field, and we hit our worst punt of the game.''

The Colts made it to the Detroit 14 before three straight incompletions set up fourth down. Luck and Avery made the most of their final chance.

``If the pass rush does their job, he doesn't get free on the scramble and he never finds that receiver,'' Schwartz said. ``All game, we focused on taking away his step-up lanes, and then on the last play, we don't do it.''

Luck was 24 of 54 for 391 yards with four TD passes and three interceptions. He has thrown 13 of his 16 interceptions on the road.

Fellow rookie T.Y. Hilton had six receptions for 100 yards and Avery had five catches for 91 yards and two scores.

Calvin Johnson had a career-high 13 receptions for 171 yards, including a 46-yard touchdown that gave Detroit a 30-21 lead late in the third quarter. Johnson also made a one-handed grab that set up Leshoure's TD in the second quarter. Johnson had at least 125 yards receiving for the fifth straight game, matching an NFL record set in 1966 by Pat Studstill with the Lions.

``Calvin Johnson is always a bright spot,'' Schwartz said. ``Maybe I should have had him on defense for the last play.''

Matthew Stafford was 27 of 46 for 313 yards with two TDs and an interception for the Lions.

Stafford missed Johnson at times late in the game, including on the Lions' last scoring drive when he threw behind him in the end zone. That led to Jason Hanson's fourth field goal of the game, which gave Detroit a 33-21 lead with 8:41 left.

``You aren't going to score a touchdown every time, but we missed too many plays and ended up settling for three,'' Stafford said. ``Normally, you are happy if you put 33 on the board, but we made too many mistakes when we could have had touchdowns.''

NOTES: Lions WR Ryan Broyles (right knee) left the game, leaving the team thin at the position because it left Titus Young inactive because of his behavior and previously lost Nate Burleson to a season-ending knee injury. ... Colts OL Joe Reitz left in the first quarter and didn't return after undergoing a concussion evaluation. ... Indy rookie TE Coby Fleener, who missed the previous four games with a shoulder injury, made a twisting, 26-yard TD catch in the second quarter.

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What exactly was Alex Smith thinking when he went out of bounds on the last drive?

What exactly was Alex Smith thinking when he went out of bounds on the last drive?

FEDEX FIELD -- Late in the Redskins win over the Cowboys, when the contest was still very much in question, Alex Smith made an incredibly poor decision. 

It was situational football at its peak. The Redskins had the ball with under 90 seconds left and a three point lead while Dallas had just one timeout left. A first down would end the game, but beyond getting a new set of downs, forcing Cowboys coach Jason Garrett to use his final timeout was the next highest priority. 

Somehow, Smith achieved neither. 

On third-and-9 from his own 36-yard-line, Smith took the snap and worked left on a play-action bootleg. There was room to run for a modest gain, but it seemed obvious Smith would not pick up the first down. 

Only Smith didn't see it that way. 

"I knew a first down would end the game and I did have glimpses of myself getting the first down whatever it took," the quarterback said. 

Instead of getting the first down, Smith got dragged out of bounds by Dallas LB Sean Lee. That stopped the clock for the Cowboys, and allowed Garrett to save his final timeout. 

Barring a turnover, it was the worst possible outcome on the play. 

What makes the situation so strange is that Smith is a very smart player. A 14-year veteran, Smith is known as a guy that won't make mistakes to hurt his team and gives his squad a chance for a win every week. Only late in the game, Smith tried to make the play to go for the win, and made a huge mistake instead. 

"I all of a sudden found myself pretty awkward on the sidelines there and can’t have it," Smith said. "[I] could have obviously cost us the game in hindsight at that point, I think kinda abandon ship and go down there on the sideline.”

The good news for Smith, and for the 4-2 Redskins, is that Cowboys kicker Brett Maher plunked the upright on his game-tying field goal attempt. An attempt that might not have happened if Smith stayed in bounds. 

In the end, it didn't cost the Redskins. 

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Capitals vs. Canucks: Time, TV Channel, Live Stream, How to Watch

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Capitals vs. Canucks: Time, TV Channel, Live Stream, How to Watch

The Washington Capitals (3-2-2) head to Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada after an overtime/shootout loss against the Florida Panthers last Friday. 

The Caps are determined to avoid the devastation they felt in the first period when they gave away four goals to the Panthers. They will need to focus in the power plays and avoid penalties at all costs.

Many fans were looking forward to the reunion with former player Jay Beagle, who is now centerman for the Canucks, but he is unfortunately out on injury. However you can look out for Caps Nic Dowd, who will have his own homecoming game against his former team. 

Here is everything you need to know about Capitals vs. Canucks which takes place at 10:00 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Washington.
 

CAPITALS vs. CANUCKS HOW TO WATCH

What: Washington Capitals vs. Vancouver Canucks, Game 8 of the 2018-19 NHL Regular Season

Where: Rogers Arena, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

When: Monday, October 22 at 10:00 p.m. ET

TV Channel: The Capitals vs. Canucks game will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington (NBC Sports Washington Channel Finder)

Live Stream: You can live stream Capitals vs. Canucks on NBC Sports Washington's live stream page and on the NBC Sports App.

Radio: Caps 24/7 Radio, 106.7 The Fan FM

CAPITALS vs. CANUCKS SCHEDULE

9:00 PM: Caps Faceoff Live
9:30 PM: Caps Pregame Live
10:00 PM: Capitals vs. Canucks
12:30 PM: Caps Postgame Live

CAPITALS vs. CANUCKS PLAYERS TO WATCH

Lars Eller, F, Capitals: In his last game, he had a three-point night with three assists. He is a messaive help and shined within the trio of Vrana and Connoly on Friday.

Tim Schaller, F, Canucks: He was struggling in the preseason but came back with a vengeance. He assisted with a penatly kill and is a key component in fourth line. 

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