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Dublin: 10 °C Sunday 20 April, 2014

NFL Playoffs: Colts ride Luck while the Saints march on

Saturday’s Wildcard action lived up to its name.

Andrew Luck rallied his side in the second half to secure a famous playoff victory on Saturday night.
Andrew Luck rallied his side in the second half to secure a famous playoff victory on Saturday night.
Image: Michael Conroy/AP/Press Association Images

AFTER LOOKING LIKE he had cost his team a playoff win with three interceptions against the injury ravaged Kansas City Chiefs, Andrew Luck lived up to his name with one of the most fortunate scores you’re likely to see in the NFL.

Down ten points with 10:45 left in the fourth quarter, the Colts were at the Chiefs’ two-yard line when Luck handed the ball off to running back Donald Brown.

Brown, however, lost possession after a near-perfect tackle from Eric Berry and it looked like that might be all she wrote for the Colts.

Luck though, had other ideas.

After the ball bounced off the back of centre Samson Satele’s helmet, the former number one overall pick scooped it up on the bounce and skipped in for the score.

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Image: SBNation Gifs

After a Kansas City field goal, the Colts’ quarterback connected with TY Hilton on a 64-yard touchdown pass with just over four minutes remaining to ensure that, for only the second time in NFL history, a team had come from 28 or more points down to win a playoff game.

In Saturday’s other game, Shayne Graham — only signed two weeks ago — kicked a 32-yard field goal as time expired to give New Orleans their first ever road playoff victory, a 26-24 win over the Philadelphia Eagles.

It had looked as if the Saints might continue their terrible away form in the postseason — they’d lost five of five outside of New Orleans since 1967 — when Nick Foles hit Zach Ertz with 4:54 remaining to take a one point lead.

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Image: GifdSports

However, a horse-collar penalty on the ensuing kick off gave the Saints brilliant field position inside the Eagles’ half and Graham made no mistake with his fourth field goal of the game.

Quarterback Drew Brees was solid if unspectacular (20-of-30 for 250 yards with a touchdown), while Mark Ingram rushed 18 times for 97 yards and a score.

The Saints’ reward is a trip to Seattle to face the NFC’s number one team, the Seahawks, next Saturday.

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