DETROIT — Philip Rivers threw three touchdown passes in the second quarter to give the Indianapolis Colts a double-digit lead and they beat the Detroit Lions 41-21 on Sunday.
Rivers picked apart Detroit’s defense while completing 23 of 33 attempts, mostly short passes to the outside or over the middle.
The 38-year-old quarterback also showed he still has some arm strength to go along with his savvy touch.
The Colts were healthy and looked rested and ready to roll after being idle last week and improved to 3-0 after a bye under coach Frank Reich.
4:02 p.m. - Colts beat the Lions 41-21. The team is now 5-2 for the season. The Lions are 3-4.
3:58 p.m. - Detroit is out of timeouts. Colts still have three remaining after the 2-minute warning.
3:55 p.m. - The pass to Jones is too low. It's Colts ball on their own 20 yard line.
3:55 p.m. - Lions are unable to convert on third down. They'll go for it on 4th and 10.
3:51 p.m. - Stafford's pass to Hall is complete. Another 1st down.
3:50 p.m. - A 25-yard pass to Danny Amendola is complete. First and 10 Lions.
3:49 p.m. - Stafford sacked. It's the fifth time he's been sacked today.
3:48 p.m. - Stafford runs the ball to another 1st down. The Lions are in Colts territory.
3:47 p.m. - D'Andre Swift catches a pass and makes the 1st down.
3:44 p.m. - Burton leaps in for the touchdown. The extra point is no good. This is Blankenship's second miss today. Colts up 41-21.
3:42 p.m. - Hines carries it to the 2 yard line. Colts are once again in the red zone.
3:40 p.m. - A 20-yard pickup for Pascal. Colts first down.
3:37 p.m. - First down Colts.
3:35 p.m. - Doolin pushed out of bounds after a gain of 15.
3:30 p.m. - Jones touchdown puts Lions back in the game. Score 35-21 with about 12 minutes to go in the 4th.
3:28 p.m. - Lions makes 73-yard play. First and goal Detroit.
3:24 p.m. - A pick 6 by Moore extends the Colts lead. Score: 35-14.
3:21 p.m. - Two-point conversion is good. Colts lead 28-14.
3:20 p.m. - Touchdown Wilkins!
3:18 p.m. - A 41-yard pass is incomplete but a pass interference call puts Colts in the red zone. First down.
3:14 p.m. - Kenny Golloday will not return to the game for the Lions. He's out with a hip injury.
3:13 p.m. - Colts are in Detroit territory after an 18 yard pickup by Johnson on 3rd and 9.
3:11 p.m. - Darius Leonard strips Stafford of the ball. Colts possession.
3:09 p.m. - An 18 yard gain for the Lions. Another 1st down.
3:08 p.m. - Agnew gets a Detroit first down with less than five minutes to play in the 3rd.
3:04 p.m. - The Colts have a back-to-back 3 and outs.
2:59 p.m. - Hokensen completes the catch but is unable to get the 1st down. He's stopped by Kenny Moore.
2:58 p.m. - False start on offense makes it 3rd and 14 for Detroit.
2:57 p.m. - Stafford's pass flies over the head of Marvin Hall. Third down.
2:55 p.m. - Stafford throws a bullet down the field and its caught. Lions have a first down.
2:50 p.m. - Colts unable to convert on this drive. Sanchez punts the ball.
2:49 p.m. - Holloday is being checked out in the locker room while T.Y Hilton is out with a groin injury for the rest of the game.
2:44 p.m. - Calvin Johnson runs it in for a touchdown! Colts lead 20-14.
2:43 p.m. - Jesse James catches Staffords pass and runs into the red zone.
2:41 p.m. - Two completed passes by Stafford put the Lions in Colts territory at the 45.
2:39 p.m. - Jamal Agnew catches the punt and runs it back to the 32 yard line.
2:25 p.m. Halftime Colts lead 20-7.
2:24 p.m. - A field goal attempt on 2nd down is no good.
2:24 p.m. - Hockensen catches the ball for a Lions 1st down.
2:23 p.m. - Detroit uses its final timeout of the half with 16 seconds to go. It's 3rd and 6.
2:22 p.m. - Pass complete for a Lions first down.
2:21 p.m. - Stafford's pass is complete to Hockenson. There's 45 seconds to go before the half.
2:19 p.m. - Blankenship misses the extra point.
2:18 p.m. - Hines for his second touchdown of the day!
2:17 p.m. - Rivers fires and it's caught by Trey Burton at the 29.
2:16 p.m. - Taylor gets the 1st down.
2:13 p.m. - After Taylor is unable to get the 1st down. Colts decide to go for it on 4th and 1.
2:07 p.m. - Stafford is sacked on 3rd down by Denico Autrey.
2:01 p.m. - Doyle takes it in. Touchdown Indianapolis!
2 p.m. - Pascal shoved out of bounds inside the 10 after catching the pass. First and goal Colts.
1:59 p.m. - A late penalty on Lions Shelton gives Colts a 1st down.
1:58 pm. - Rivers gets wrapped up and is unable to make the play on 3rd down. A loss of 7.
1:56 p.m. - Mo Alie-Cox catches the ball for a gain of 14. First down.
1:54 p.m. - Wilkins carries the ball across the 45 yard lin with a 16 yard line.
1:51 p.m. - Stafford is sacked on 3rd down. Lions will punt the ball.
1:50 p.m. - Pass intended for Kenny Golloday is bobbled in the air before it hits the ground. Third and 10 Lions.
1:49 p.m. - Matt Stafford sets up a play fake and his pass is complete to TJ Hockenson. First down Lions.
1:44 p.m. - Touchdown Hines! Score 7-7. Hines celebrates by doing a cartwheel in the end zone.
1:43 p.m. - Rivers pass is complete to Marcus Johnson for a gain of 21. First down Colts.
1:42 p.m. - Taylor for a gain of two. It's 2nd and 7.
1:41 p.m. - Rivers scrambles before completing a pass to Mo Alie-Cox for a 1st down.
1:37 p.m. - A 59-yard punt by Fox gives the Colts the ball near their 40 yard line.
1:35 p.m. - Colts offense struggles a bit against the Lions defense.
1:34 p.m. - Colts trail Lions at the end of the first. Score 0-7.
1:33 p.m. - Sanchez punts the ball. Fair catch at the Lions' 7 yard line.
1:31 p.m. - A loss of two on 2nd down as Hines is stopped by the Detroit defense. Third and 12 Colts.
1:29 p.m. - Rivers calls a timeout as the play clock was about to expire.
1:28 p.m. - Mo Alie-Cox catches pass and gets the 1st down.
1:27 p.m. - After a drive by Pascal, Wilkins runs it past the first down on 2nd and 2.
1:21 p.m. - Stafford's pass is complete to Marvin Jones. Touchdown Lions, 7-0.
1:20 p.m. - Colts punt is blocked and Detroit recovers at the Indy 32.
1:18 p.m. - Rivers pass to Jack Doyle is incomplete. Third and 18.
1:17 p.m. - Taylor catches a pass and slips past the 1st down.
1:15 p.m. - Twenty-one-year-old Jonathan Taylor gets the 1 yard needed for a first down. Colts are at their own 35.
1:10 p.m. - A quick three and out for the Lions.
1:06 p.m. - Rivers sacked by Lions' Okwara on 3rd and 11. Fourth down Colts.
1:04 p.m. - Philip Rivers connects with Jordan Wilkins for a 24-yard play and a 1st down.
1:02 p.m. - Colts receive the ball in the opening kickoff.
12:00 p.m. - The Colts welcome back a host of players to the active list for today's game, including center Ryan Kelly, tight end Mo Alie-Cox and rookie wide receiver Michael Pittman Jr.