Bills frolic in the snow after 13-7 OT win against Colts
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — Snow angels and snowball fights.
Buffalo Bills receiver Deonte Thompson suddenly has a tale to tell his grandkids about the day he played in near white-out conditions.
“I’m from Belle Glade, Florida, and we don’t see this kind of snow,” Thompson said following the Bills’ 13-7 overtime win against the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday.
“But it was actually fun. I’m not going to lie,” he added. “This is a game you dreamed about playing as a kid, playing in snowy games. It definitely was a fun day.”
Thompson wasn’t affected by the conditions. He made a 35-yard catch up the right sideline on the Bills final drive that ended with LeSean McCoy finding a hole up the middle before cutting to his left to score on a 21-yard run with 1:33 left in overtime.
The Bills’ bench erupted in celebration.
Several players ran on the field and made snow angels. Others playfully engaged in snowball fights. And the fans who braved the arctic elements threw up handfuls of snow as if it was confetti.
“Unbelievable,” safety Jordan Poyer said of the fans. “Our fans are unbelievable to come out here in 20 degrees or minus-20 degrees or whatever it was. But them being out here and supporting us, it’s huge.”
Poyer and Thompson were among the 30 Bills newcomers to the roster to get a first taste of how much snow a lake-effect storm can dump on New Era Field. The flakes started falling 90 minutes before kickoff. And an hour later, the snow was so thick it was near impossible to see from one side of the field to the other.
The field was snow-covered for the entire game, with a regular parade of work crews taking the field with snow blowers on their backs to clear the yard lines.
McCoy finished with 156 yards rushing, and Buffalo (7-6) won for just the second time in six games to stay in the AFC playoff picture.
The Colts (3-10) have lost seven of eight and squandered two chances to win the game in the final two minutes.
Trailing 7-0, Colts quarterback Jacoby Brissett hit Jack Doyle for a 3-yard touchdown with 1:16 left. Doyle then caught a pass on a 2-point conversion attempt only to have it negated by an offensive pass interference penalty against receiver Kamar Aiken.
Kicker Adam Vinatieri also missed a 43-yard field-goal attempt wide left with 1 second left.
“I drove it. I thought it had a chance,” said Vinatieri, who did hit a 43-yard point-after attempt to tie the game. “That’s probably the worst conditions I’ve played in maybe ever.”
QUARTERBACK CONCERNS: The Bills face more questions at quarterback after rookie Nathan Peterman sustained a possible concussion late in the third quarter.
Peterman was hurt while diving head first and being tackled on a 2-yard run. Peterman was starting in place of Tyrod Taylor, who was inactive a week after bruising his left knee in a 23-3 loss to the New England Patriots.
Third-stringer Joe Webb finished the game and went 2 of 6 for 35 yards passing and an interception, and had five carries for 27 yards.
ON THE RUN: Colts running back Frank Gore had 130 yards on a career-best 36 carries. Gore topped 100 yards for the first time in 15 games going back to last season. It was also the 42nd 100-yard rushing game of his career to move him into a tie with O.J. Simpson for 16th on the NFL list.
COPING WITH WEATHER: The dome-field Colts were forced to adapt to the outdoors by sticking with the ground game. Brissett finished 11 of 22 for 69 yards passing.
The Colts ran the ball on their first 17 plays of the game before Brissett attempted his first pass by hitting running back Marlon Mack on an 11-yard play with 6:13 left in the second quarter. The previous time the Colts failed to attempt a pass in one quarter was in a 27-13 win against Tennessee on Dec. 18, 2011.
WORKING OVERTIME: The Bills had lost four straight home games decided in overtime since a 22-16 win against Cincinnati on Oct. 5, 2003. Buffalo improved its OT record to 21-15.
The Colts are 1-2 in overtime games this season after a 16-13 loss to Arizona on Sept. 17 and a 26-23 win over San Francisco on Oct. 8. They’re 15-16-1 including 1-4 in the playoffs.
SEVEN WINS: Buffalo has won seven of its first 13 games for just the fifth time during its 17-season playoff drought — the longest active streak in North America’s four major professional sports. The Bills have also won at least seven in four straight seasons for the first time since a 10-year run from 1987-96.