The Colts never trailed in this AFC Wild Card mismatch and advanced to face a familiar opponent in Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos next Sunday.
The Bengals were shown another early exit, as Marvin Lewis fell to 0-6 in the postseason as Cincinnati’s head coach, the last four coming with Andy Dalton under center.
Dalton threw for just 155 yards on 18-of-35 passing, but was pressured all game and was without his top two targets in wide receiver A.J. Green and tight end Jermaine Gresham.
Luck, on the other hand, finished with 376 yards and touchdown through the air in leading the Colts to a second straight Wild Card victory.
Adam Vinatieri made all four of his field goal tries, Daniel Herron gained 141 yards from scrimmage and ran for a touchdown, and T.Y. Hilton caught six passes for 103 yards for the AFC South champions.
Romo’s 8-yard touchdown pass to Terrance Williams with 2:32 remaining finished off a run of 17 unanswered Dallas points, lifting the Cowboys to a 24-20 victory over the Lions in a thrilling NFC Wild Card clash.
Detroit appeared on its way to its first postseason win since 1991 after taking a 20-7 lead deep into the third quarter, but Romo engineered three straight scoring drives to bring Dallas back on a night in which the Cowboys’ two other offensive stars were mostly held in check by a stout Lions defense.
With Dez Bryant managing a modest 48 yards on three catches while double covered much of the game, Williams also stepped up to help Dallas advance to a matchup with second-seeded Green Bay in next Sunday’s Divisional round. The second-year wideout came through with a 76-yard touchdown late in the first half and finished with 92 yards on three grabs.
DeMarco Murray added a touchdown run while grinding out 75 yards on 19 carries against Detroit’s top-ranked rushing defense, and the Cowboys received a boost as well from a controversial call that preceded the game-winning drive.
The Lions punted the ball away with 8:10 left following Matthew Stafford’s incomplete pass on third down, which was initially ruled pass interference on Dallas linebacker Anthony Hitchens but then overturned by the officiating crew.