Notebook: Ross hands Colts a touchdown

August, 19, 2013
8/19/13
12:59
AM ET
Aaron Ross Jeff Zelevansky/Getty ImagesLuckily for Aaron Ross, this unlucky gaffe came in the preseason.
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- The most memorable play of Sunday night's New York Giants-Indianapolis Colts game was actually a gaffe, destined to appear on NFL blooper reels for years to come.

With the Giants leading 3-0 late in the first quarter, the Colts had a second-and-3 at the Giants' 28-yard line. Andrew Luck dropped back to pass looking for Reggie Wayne down the right-hand side near the end zone. The ball was underthrown, and it appeared Aaron Ross was going to have an easy interception. But Ross juggled the ball twice and flipped it over his head -- right into the diving arms of Wayne for an Indianapolis touchdown.

"Oh yeah, I knew it was a pick," Ross said. "I saw it leave his hands and then as soon as I looked up, the lights just took the ball away. I couldn’t see anymore, and that’s what kind of made me fall. As soon as I fell back, it hit my hands, and it kind of shocked me. So it just popped up and I turned around and Reggie was catching the ball. One of those plays you can’t get back."

The play is destined for "SportsCenter's" Not Top 10 Plays -- and Ross knows it. But he was able to laugh about it after the game.

"I’m happy it’s preseason," Ross said, smiling.

Rookie rising? Seventh-round draft pick Michael Cox, the running back out of UMass, continued to impress on Sunday night.

Cox had just 4 rushing yards on two carries, but he had gains of 28 and 20 yards on screen plays and also had a nice 36-yard kick return.

"He’s got a lot of fight," head coach Tom Coughlin said. "He breaks tackles. He’s very persistent in what he does. He does the same thing on special teams, so he’s making good progress."

New starter: Dan Connor started at middle linebacker on Sunday after Mark Herzlich started there in the first preseason game against the Steelers.

Coughlin said the competition for that spot is far from over. "No, it’s very competitive, so we flipped it around and just wanted to see him operate with the ones [first-team defensive players]," Coughlin said.

Bright spot: One more bright spot in the Giants loss was new placekicker Josh Brown.

Yes, the Giants were 0-for-4 in the red zone, but Brown was 4-for-4 on field goals, including makes of 47 and 45 yards.
Kieran Darcy is an ESPNNewYork.com staff writer. He joined ESPN in August 2000 after graduating from the University of Pennsylvania, where he played four years of JV basketball.
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