The New England Patriots traveled to Lucas Oil Stadium and defeated the Indianapolis Colts, 34-27, to win their fifth game in as many games. The Patriots are off to their best start in eight years.
Whether it was Tom Brady or LeGarrette Blount, the New England offense was getting the job done on Sunday night. The Patriots (5-0) proved their offensive dominance with a late first quarter score, while continuing to pile points on the board throughout the night.
Already down 7-0, Brady found receiver Julian Edelman for a 12-yard score. Edelman broke free and made some moves to etch his name in the score sheet and tie the game.
The first score of the game, however, was made at the 7:21 mark in the first quarter by the Colts (3-3). Quarterback Andrew Luck released back and took enough time to find Donte Moncrief for a five-yard touchdown.
Moncrief caught six passes for 69 yards and a touchdown on Sunday. The 22-year-old was the X-factor coming into the game against the Patriots, but could not do enough to get the win for the Colts.
In the second quarter, the Patriots scored three times and the Colts scored twice, but Indianapolis went to halftime with a 21-20 lead.
The three scores for New England consisted of a 40-yard and 35-yard field goal, along with a 38-yard rushing touchdown by Blount.
On the other side, the Colts got a touchdown after Brady's pass to Edelman was intercepted by safety Mike Adams and returned for six points. The interception should have been caught, but it was bobbled multiple times by Edelman to allow the Colts to get a hand on the ball and eventually turn it into points.
It was the first interception return for a touchdown by Adams since January 1, 2006 against the Houston Texans.
With just under three minutes to go, the Colts found themselves with an offensive score. Once again, it was Luck through the air, but this time to T.Y. Hilton for a three-yard touchdown to make it a four point lead, 21-17.
Hilton led the Colts as he caught six passes for 74 yards and a touchdown, while Moncrief caught just as many passes for 69 yards and a touchdown. Meanwhile, Andre Johnson chipped in 35 yards.
The first half ended with a field goal from Stephen Gostkowski to keep the Patriots within one against the Colts.
Just four minutes into the second half, New England gained the momentum they had been looking for all game. Brady completed a 25-yard touchdown pass to tight end Rob Gronkowski to make it a 27-21 lead for the Patriots.
Both teams stayed defensively solid until Brady and the Patriots struck in the fourth quarter.
The 38-year-old quarterback hit Blount, 28, for an 11-yard score. The running back did a nice job of slotting out and using his hands to get the Patriots a 34-21 lead over the Colts.
Before the Patriots took a double-digit lead, the Colts' special teams unit made a play that can't be explained. After an offensive drive that was quickly stauled, the Colts' special teams unit came on the field to what looked at the time to be a normal punt.
However, the majority of the offensive line set up camp on the far right sideline, leaving only a snapper and someone to receive the snap. With Patriot defenders not fazed by the unusual shift, the Colts snapped it and were immediatley tackled for a loss. The play had no chance of being executed and the New England offense quickly capitalized with a Blount touchdown, seemingly putting the game out of reach.
Brady finished the night 23-for-37 with 312 passing yards, three touchdowns and just one interception. He found Danny Amendola seven times for 105 yards, but used Gronkowski and Edelman multiple times, as well.
The running back, Blount, carried the ball 16 times for 93 yards and a touchdown. He also added one catch for 11 yards and a touchdown, which gave him over 100 yards of total offense on Sunday night.
With just a minute on the clock, Luck connected with Griff Whalen for an Indianapolis score to make it a seven point deficit for the Colts, 34-27, but the onside-kick failed and the Patriots kneeled the ball for victory.
Luck completed 30-of-50 passes for 312 yards and three touchdowns. The Colts received help from running back Frank Gore, who compiled 78 yards on 13 carries, but it was not enough to lead the Colts to victory as they fell at the hands of the Patriots.