Updated: September 24, 2012 6:25AM
INDIANAPOLIS — Nick Folk kicked a 32-yard field goal as time expired Saturday night, giving the New York Jets a 17-16 AFC playoff victory over the Indianapolis Colts.
With their main tormentors out of the way, the Jets head to New England for a third meeting with the Patriots next Sunday. The Colts beat the Jets for the AFC title last year.
It was a remarkable turn for the Colts, who thought they won it when Adam Vinatieri made a 50-yard field goal with 53 seconds to go.
But Antonio Cromartie returned the ensuing kickoff 47 yards, and quarterback Mark Sanchez took five plays to get the Jets into position for the winner.
“I’ll tell you what, it feels awesome because this is the playoffs and we’re moving on,” Jets coach Rex Ryan said. “You know, [Colts quarterback Peyton Manning] is the best, and he almost did it to us again.”
Manning was 18-for-26 for 225 yards and one TD. He got Vinatieri in position with an eight-play, 48-yard drive.
But he left 53 seconds on the clock for the Jets.
After Braylon Edwards made a leaping 18-yard catch to put the ball on the Colts’ 14, Folk made his kick.
The Jets’ LaDainian Tomlinson carried 16 times for 82 yards and scored on two one-yard runs.