Colts dispose of Titans

Just like last week at Jacksonville, Colts build a double-digit lead early and cruise as Andrew Luck ties career best with four TD passes in home rout of another AFC South opponent.

Another week, another AFC South foe dismissed with ease.

The Indianapolis Colts made quick work of the Tennessee Titans in a 41-17 rout Sunday at Lucas Oil Stadium.

It wasn’t as flawless as a 44-17 rout of the Jaguars in Jacksonville last week, but the Colts jumped out to a 17-0 lead and were never seriously threatened.

The Titans (1-3), who have now lost three in a row by double digits, helped out with an early lost fumble and the Colts (2-2) also recovered a surprise onside kick after taking a 7-0 lead. The Colts enjoyed a 20-10 halftime lead and kept scoring to bump the margin to 34-10 in the third quarter.

Colts quarterback Andrew Luck tied his career high with four TD passes. Tight end Dwayne Allen, wide receiver Reggie Wayne, tight end Coby Fleener and running back Ahmad Bradshaw caught the scoring strikes.

Colts tight ends have now caught six TD passes this season. Allen has three, Fleener two and Jack Doyle has the other.

Luck entered as the NFL leader with nine touchdown passes after throwing for four scores against the Jaguars. He completed 29-of-41 passes for 393 yards against a Titans pass defense that was ranked No. 2 in the league. The Colts mercifully sat down their franchise quarterback with 6:38 remaining.

Colts’ running back Trent Richardson also had a 1-yard touchdown run.

Wayne was playing in his 200th career NFL game — the only Colts with more are Peyton Manning and Johnny Unitas — and had seven catches for 119 yards with a pretty TD grab. Wayne reached back to snag the back-shoulder throw, then spun and held the ball inside the pylon on a 28-yard scoring play in the third quarter.

The Titans were forced to start journeyman Charlie Whitehurst at quarterback due to Jake Locker’s right wrist injury. Whitehurst was making just his fifth NFL start in nine seasons. He last completed a pass for Seattle on Oct. 30, 2011, the same date the Titans last defeated the Colts, that game down in Nashville, Tenn.

Whitehurst finished 12-of-23 passing for 177 yards with one TD and one interception. And the pick wasn’t his fault — wide receiver Justin Hunter should have caught it but instead tipped the ball to safety Mike Adams. The Colts sacked the Titans passer three times. He was pulled midway through the fourth quarter in favor of rookie Zach Mettenberger.

Adams added a second interception late.

The Colts return home next week against Baltimore (3-1). Tennessee is at home against Cleveland (1-2).

Phillip B. Wilson can be found on Twitter (@pwilson24), Facebook and Google+.

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