Kerry Collins has average Colts debut in win

When it appeared that Curtis Painter would indeed not have enough to serve as a regular season replacement for Peyton Manning, its was Kerry Collins that became the next avaliable option.

The veteran came out of retirement to do so, and attempted to shake off a bit of football inactivity over the past week and on Thursday against Cincinnati.

In the end what the Colts got in their final preseason game was a little of what they've had the past month-nothing to great yet nothing to terrible.

Collins finished his half of football by completing 5-of-10 passes for 45 yards and led the team down the field on the opening possession for a field goal. It was the only score the Colts would get in the first half as they fell behind 10-3.

“He did some things pretty well out there. He had some situations where he couldn’t get the ball out, a sack, fumble and we had a drop (pass) out there," said head coach Jim Caldwell to the Colts Radio Network at halftime. "Other than that, in terms of our operation, I think he did OK.”

The likely starter should the Colts be without Peyton Manning for the opening game and beyond with due to a neck injury, Collins played without most of the first team offensive players during his half of playing time.

"Obviously they're all great players but I had confidence in the guys going in, I worked with a lot of the guys that I was in there with a lot during the week since I've been here," said Collins of his Colts debut. "There were plays out there to be made, I certainly missed a couple that could have resulted in a little better plays for us.

"I thought all in all the guys did a good job."

Dan Orlovsky was actually a bit better, completing 10-of-18 passes for 178 yards and tossed a touchdown to Taj Smith with 1:09 in the game to help the Colts to a 17-13 win over the Bengals.

The win is the first for the Colts in the preseason since August 20, 2009, when the team beat the Eagles 25-13 at Lucas Oil Stadium.

In fact, that drive by the Colts was aided by a pass interference penalty by Bengals defensive back Taylor Mays on rookie David Gilreath, which took the ball from the Colts own 46 to the Cincinnati 10. Collins completed a five-yard pass to Taj Smith to the Bengals' three-yard on third down as the Colts settled for an Adam Vinatieri field goal to give them the lead.

The quarterback then endured a rough second series, one in which an interception was overturned and then he lost the ball when sacked by Michael Johnson who in turn recovered the fumble.

In the second quarter, not much got going either. The Colts followed a three-and-out early in the quarter with one first down and then three-downs and out later on. Dan Orlovsky relieved Collins late in the quarter and for the rest of the preseason game.

With Orlovsky in, the Colts offense finally got things going late in the third quarter when Darren Evans capped a nine play, 95-yard drive with a one-yard touchdown on fourth down to tie the game at ten.

Cincinnati responded with a field goal, but Orlovsky did in kind, leading a final minute drive that culminated with a touchdown pass to Taj Smith to make it 17-13 Colts.

Kevin Thomas wrapped the game up with an interception of Dan LeFevour with ten seconds left, ending a nine-game Colts preseason losing streak.