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How the Colts created one of the wildest touchdowns of the season

INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA - SEPTEMBER 10: Trevor Lawrence #16 of the Jacksonville Jaguars fumbles the ball as he is sacked by DeForest Buckner #99 of the Indianapolis Colts in the third quarter at Lucas Oil Stadium on September 10, 2023 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — It’s a play that will go down as one of the craziest in Colts history.

With less than three minutes left in the third quarter Sunday, Colts defensive lineman DeForest Buckner started a frenzy. It all started with a hard hit on Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence.

Lawrence lost the ball. Rookie running back Tank Bigsby picked it up, only to lose it when linebacker Zaire Franklin punched it out.

“To be honest, I was just trying to be an bleep so I punched the ball out,” Franklin said.

Enter No. 99 again. Buckner scooped it and takes it 26 yards for the defensive touchdown.

“Kind of got up and trying to figure out what was going on and back of my mind I was like, ‘I didn’t hear a whistle.’ You know what I mean?” Buckner said. “Everybody else is like, ‘PICK IT UP!’ So I scoop it up, turn around and I’m running. I’m probably going to get yelled out, no reaching out to the pylon. It could’ve been a touchback or whatever. But I saw my opportunity and had to take it.”

“I tell Buck he’s the most athletic 6-foot-7 guy I’ve ever met in my life,” Franklin said. “That was a hell of a play. Good to see him get in the box. Always good when you score on defense.”

It’s Buckner’s second in his eight-year career. Both were equally as wild. The first coming in 2019 when he was playing for the San Francisco 49ers. The career-first happened against the Seattle Seahawks during Monday Night Football.

Head coach Shane Steichen says he’s never seen anything like that in person.

“It was awesome.” Steichen said. “We always preach get on all lose balls. That looked like a sack, whatever, maybe an incomplete pass, but Zaire really made that thing go.”

“It was a blessing to kind of see, you know, especially game one,” linebacker Shaq Leonard said. “When we talk about takeaways and scoring on defense. Well, we finally got it done in the first game, the season opener. We can build off that and keep this thing going.”

Going all the way to Houston next Sunday.

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