INDIANAPOLIS — Jeff Tuel has a memory for a lifetime.
The Buffalo Bills' rookie third-string quarterback completed an astounding 19 of 23 pass attempts for 212 yards and two touchdowns, helping the visitors blast away from the Indianapolis Colts in the second half and win Sunday's preseason opener 44-20 at Lucas Oil Stadium.
"Obviously, everybody top to bottom is disappointed," head coach Chuck Pagano said. "Never envisioned (getting) blown out in the football game and having the outcome that we had. Like I told the guys, it's never as bad as you think it is, and it's never as good as you think it is. Somewhere in between is where reality lies."
Reality for Tuel was a heroic second half that helped break open a game the Colts led for much of the first.
Indianapolis quarterback Andrew Luck played just two series, going 4-of-6 for 51 yards and leaving with the game tied 3-3. His longest completion went for 23 yards to Coby Fleener, but the drive ended moments later when the second-year tight end fumbled at the Bills' 24-yard line.
Luck got lit up on a sack by Buffalo's Mario Williams when the defensive end came unblocked around left tackle Anthony Castonzo. But the second-year quarterback took all of the blame for that mishap.
He said the problem was with his cadence, not his protection.
"Castonzo's (angry) with me," Luck said. "He said, 'Do you want to get hurt?' I publicly take that one."
Second-year running back Vick Ballard looked strong in limited duty with three carries for 18 yards, and second-year wide receiver T.Y. Hilton was the Colts' star of the day, with three catches for 61 yards.
He and backup quarterback Matt Hasselbeck gave Indianapolis the lead on the final play of the first quarter when they hooked up for a 45-yard touchdown pass.