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Playoff Game Blog: Bills defense stops Colts in final drive, win 27-24

Follow all the action in the wild card playoff game.
Credit: AP
Buffalo Bills fans Scott Hammond, right, and his son Landon pose for a photograph as their team warms up before an NFL wild-card playoff football game against the Indianapolis Colts, Saturday, Jan. 9, 2021, in Orchard Park, N.Y. The Hammonds were among the lucky 6,700 few to land tickets for the Bills wild-card playoff against the Indianapolis Colts for Buffalo's first home playoff game in 24 years. (AP Photo/Jeffrey T. Barnes)

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. —

The Indianapolis Colts season is over after a 27-24 loss to the Buffalo Bills in the first round of the playoffs.

A quarter-century ago, the Buffalo Bills won a playoff game. Now, they have another victory. They even figured out how to stop a Hail Mary. Buffalo snapped an 0-6 postseason skid with a 27-24 victory Saturday against Indianapolis. The previous playoff win was over Miami on Dec. 30, 1995. Josh Allen threw two touchdown passes, scored another rushing, and Micah Hyde batted down Philip Rivers’ desperation pass to end the game.

Final stats

The Colts had 472 total yards, while the Bills had 397.

The Colts also dominated the clock, with 34:17 time of possession, compared to 25:43 for the Bills.

The Colts were 9-17 on third down conversions, while the Bills were 2-9.

Colts QB Philip Rivers was 27/46 with 309 yards. Bills QB Josh Allen was 26/35 with 324 yards. 

Colts RB Jonathan Taylor had 78 yards in 21 carries, and RB Nyheim Heines had 75 yards in six carries. Bills QB Josh Allen had 54 yards in 11 carries.

Colts WR Michael Pittman Jr. had 90 yards in five catches, TE Jack Doyle had 70 yards in seven catches, WR Zach Pascal had 37 yards in three catches, TE Trey Burton had 34 yards in three catches, TE Mo Alie-Cox had 32 yards in four catches and WR T.Y. Hilton had 32 yards in two catches. Bills WR Stefon Diggs had 128 yards in six catches, and WR Gabriel Davis had 85 yards in four catches.

4th quarter

4:21 p.m. — Colts QB Philip Rivers attempts "Hail-Mary" pass on fourth-and-11 but is blocked by Bills defense. Bills win 27-24.

4:18 p.m. — Bills take final timeout. Colts have the ball at Buffalo's 47-yard line on second-and-11 with 0:14 remaining.

4:16 p.m. — Officials confirm ruling on the field. Colts have the ball at Buffalo's 46-yard line on first-and-10 with 0:28 remaining.

4:11 p.m. — Colts QB Philip Rivers throws 19-yard pass to WR Zach Pascal on fourth-and-10 for first down with 0:28 remaining in the game. Colts trail Bills 27-24. Play is under review.

4:08 p.m. — Colts RB Jonathan Taylor gets first down on fourth-and-1 with 1:08 remaining in the game. Colts trail Bills 27-24.

4:05 p.m. — Colts at third-and-5 at own 30-yard line with zero timeouts left at the final 2-minute warning. Colts trail Bills 27-24.

4:02 p.m. — Colts get the ball back at their own 14-yard line with 2:30 remaining in the game. Bills lead 27-24.

3:59 p.m. — Bills QB Josh Allen fumbles the ball on first-and-10, but Bills recover the ball. The Bills lose 23 yards on the play.

3:52 p.m. — Colts TE Jack Doyle catches 27-yard touchdown pass from QB Philip Rivers. Colts convert 2-point conversion this time. Bills lead 27-24 with 6:13 remaining in the game.

3:50 p.m. — Colts RB Nyheim Hines runs for 33 yards on third-and-7 to give Colts crucial first down in the fourth quarter.

3:45 p.m. — Bills kicker Tyler Bass makes 54-yard field goal. Bills lead 27-16 with 8:08 remaining in the game.

3:34 p.m. — Colts QB Philip Rivers passes to WR Zach Pascal for touchdown. Colts go for a 2-point conversion instead of kicking an extra point but were stopped. Bills lead 24-16 with 11:32 remaining in the game.

3:30 p.m. — Colts RB Nyheim Hines gets first down with 29-yard run. Colts now inside Buffalo territory while trailing 24-10. 

3:26 p.m. — Bills QB Josh Allen throws touchdown to WR Stefon Diggs. Bills lead 24-10 with 14:10 remaining in game.

3rd quarter

3:19 p.m. — Bills lead the Colts 17-10 at the end of the third quarter and possession of the ball inside Colts territory.

3:12 p.m. — Rodrigo Blankenship misses 33-yard field goal as it hits the right upright and goes out. Bills still lead 17-10 with 3:32 remaining in third quarter.

3:09 p.m. — Colts QB Philip Rivers passes to TE Trey Burton on third-and-5 to get first down inside the red zone.

2:57 p.m. — Bills kick 46-yard field goal on first possession of second half. Bills lead 17-10 with 11:05 remaining in third quarter.

2:50 p.m. — Bills begin the second half with the ball and a 14-10 lead.

Halftime stats

Despite trailing 14-10 at the half, the Colts had 222 total yards, while the Bills had 199.

The Colts also dominated the clock, with 19:41 time of possession, compared to 10:26 for the Bills.

The Colts were 4-8 on third down conversions, while the Bills were 0-4.

Neither team fumbled the ball or threw an interception.

Colts QB Philip Rivers was 13/19 with 167 yards. Bills QB Josh Allen was 11/16 with 138 yards. 

Colts RB Jonathan Taylor had 40 yards in 14 carries. Bills QB Josh Allen had 43 yards in six carries.

Colts WR Michael Pittman Jr. had 91 yards in four catches, WR T.Y. Hilton had 32 yards in two catches and TE Mo Alie-Cox had 16 yards in one catch. Bills WR Gabriel Davis had 72 yards in three catches, and WR Stefon Diggs had 36 yards in one catch.

2nd quarter

2:34 p.m. — Bills lead the Colts 14-10 at the end of the first half. Bills will get the ball back to start the third quarter.

2:32 p.m. — Bills QB Josh Allen runs the ball to score touchdown. Bills lead 14-10 with 0:14 remaining in the second quarter.

2:29 p.m. — Colts CB Isaiah Rodgers nearly intercepts Bills QB Josh Allen's pass in the end zone but is called incomplete after review.

2:28 p.m. — Bills go for it on fourth-and-goal, but Colts DE Kemeko Turay steps offsides to give Bills first-and-10.

2:14 p.m. — Colts go for it on fourth-and-goal but pass is incomplete to WR Michael Pittman Jr. Bills take over at their own 4-yard line with 1:46 remaining in second quarter.

2:11 p.m. — Colts at third-and-goal at 2-minute warning. Colts lead Bills 10-7.

2:09 p.m. — TE Mo Alie-Cox catches pass on third-and-2 to get first down inside the 5-yard line.

2:07 p.m. — WR Michael Pittman Jr. catches pass and gains 31 yards. Colts have ball at Bills' 28-yard line.

2:04 p.m. — Colts defense forces Bills to punt after quick possession. Colts have ball at their own 41-yard line with 6:08 remaining in the second quarter.

1:57 p.m. — RB Jonathan Taylor scores touchdown. Colts lead 10-7. 8:07 remaining in second quarter.

1:54 p.m. — Philip Rivers throws to RB Jonathan Taylor for a 6-yard gain on third-and-4 to keep the drive alive. 

1:48 p.m. — Bills go three-and-out, forced to punt. Colts get the ball back at their own 34-yard line.13:34 remaining in second quarter.

1st quarter

1:44 p.m. — First quarter ends. Bills lead 7-3 and have the ball at their own 13-yard line.

1:42 p.m. — Colts punt to Bills after four-play, 11-yard drive.

1:34 p.m. — Bills quickly respond with eight-play, 85-yard drive to score touchdown. Bills lead 7-3. 1:49 remaining in first quarter.

1:25 p.m. — Rodrigo Blankenship kicks 30-yard field goal. Colts lead 3-0 with 5:29 remaining in first quarter.

1:22 p.m. — Colts get big first down on third-and-6 at their own 40-yard line. Philip Rivers pass to T.Y. Hilton is a gain of 23 yards.

1:17 p.m. — Colts defense stops Bills on their first offensive possession. Colts get ball back at their own 36-yard line. 9:16 remaining in the first quarter. 

1:14 p.m. — Colts punt on first possession after making it to the Bills' 39-yard line. Bills will begin at their own 3-yard line.

1:05 p.m. — Bills won the coin toss, but chose to defer to the second half. 

12:30 p.m. — 13News sports director Dave Calabro shares his final thoughts ahead of the kickoff.

12 p.m. Colts list their inactive players for today's NFL wild card game, with All-Pro DeForest Buckner and Khari Willis available to play.

The weather forecast for the game is sunny and cold, with highs in the 30s.

Reich returns to Buffalo

Colts Head Coach Frank Reich became a four-time AFC champion in Buffalo. It's where he orchestrated the biggest comeback in NFL history. It's also where two of his children were born. And, yes, he's still a Bills fan. Just not today, when the Indianapolis Colts take on the Bills for the second time with Reich as coach.

Credit: AP
FILE - Buffalo Bills quarterback Frank Reich passes against the Houston Oilers in an NFL football game at Rich Stadium in Orchard Park, N.Y., in this Jan. 3, 1993, file photo. Reich rallied the Bills from a 35-3 deficit to a 41-38 win in overtime. Indianapolis Colts head coach Frank Reich returns to Orchard Park for an NFL wild-card football game against the Bills on Saturday, Jan. 9, 2021. (AP Photo/John Hickey, File)