In The Red Zone: Indianapolis Colts at New England Patriots Preview Week 11

In the Red Zone

This Week

Indianapolis Colts @ New England Patriots

The New England Patriots host the Indianapolis Colts at Gillette Stadium on Sunday at 4:25 p.m.  The game was flexed by CBS from it’s original 1 p.m. time slot.

The Colts —- The Patriots
Overall 6-3 Overall  6-3
Road record  2-2 Home record 3-1
AFC East  1-1 AFC South  1-0
AFC  4-2 AFC  5-1

John Parry is the referee assigned to the game.  Parry also officiated the Patriots Week 4 game in Buffalo.

The Line/Prediction

As of Thursday the line on the game from 5dimes.eu via Yahoo Sports has the Patriots at MINUS 10.  The over under is 54.  

My Prediction is Patriots 35, Colts, 27.  Take the points (COLTS) and take the over.  I am 2-7 against the spread and 6 of 9 on calling the over/under in 2012.

Tickets

The Patriots are reporting the game as a sell out. It is the 200th consecutive sell out dating back to the 1994 season opener.  The record includes preseason, regular season and playoff games.

Tickets to the game, if available, can be purchased through Ticketmaster.  You can check the availability here.

After market tickets are available through the Official Patriots Ticket Exchange where season ticket holders can sell their unused seats to fans on the season ticket waiting list.

Getting to the Game

If you’re lucky enough to be going to the game in Foxboro make sure you check out the links.

Here is the up to date weather forecast from the Weather Channel for Foxboro MA.

Click for all the game day information including stadium directions, parking and information and map and a Gillette Stadium seating chart.

Tailgating

Here’s a bunch of different tailgating recipes from Tailgating.com.  There’s something there for everyone and every type of meal or snack.  I’ve tried some of the recipes and they’re very good. 

And with tailgating many people enjoy some adult beverages.  With that in mind check out Drink Nation for how to make all sorts of great drinks.  You can look things up by name, ingredient(s) or theme.

Whether it’s at the game, a bar or a friend’s house moderation is always the key to a great time.  Please don’t drink and drive and designate a sober driver.  Remember You Drink, You Drive, You Lose.

BROADCAST INFORMATION

Television

CBS in televising the game regionally and Jim Nantz will do play by play while Phil Simms will provide the game analysis.  You can look here for your local affiliate.

See if you’re getting the game courtesy of J.P. Kirby at the506.com.

The DirecTV designation is Channel 711.

Here are all the rules on NFL TV broadcasts including explaining the blackout rules, flex scheduling and commercial breaks.

Radio

The Patriots Radio Network broadcasts the game from flagship station WBZ-FM, 98.5 the Sports Hub in Boston. Gil Santos handles the play-by-play and former Patriots QB Scott Zolak will do the game analysis. It all starts with Gary Tanguay and Andy Gresh with the pregame show at 1 p.m. along the network. The post game starts after the final gun and continues for three hours along the network.

The Patriots radio network call is available on Sirius Channel 91, XM Channel 228 and on SiriusXM Internet Channel 818.

The Colts Radio Network has Bob Lamey calling the game while former Colt Will Wolford provides the game analysis via their flagship station WFNI.

Their call is available on Sirius Channel 137 and SiriusXM Internet Channel 813.

Dial Global Radio Sports will be broadcasting the game to their national affiliates.  Tom McCarthy and Tony Boselli will call the action.

Patriots All Access

Patriots All-Access features behind the scenes looks, interviews and breakdowns with head coach Bill Belichick and in depth features on the team.  It’s hosted by Steve Burton of WBZ-TV (Boston) and airs weekly in most New England television markets.

  • Boston MA on TV 38 Friday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 9 a.m.
  • Providence RI on WNAC Friday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 9 a.m.
  • Manchester NH on WMUR Saturday at midnight
  • Portland ME on WMTW Sunday at 5 a.m.
  • Hartford CT on WCTX Saturday at 5 p.m.
  • Springfield MA on WFXQ Saturday at 7 p.m.
  • Bangor ME on WVII Sunday at 11 a.m.

You can also watch it anytime on the teams website in the media section.

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Last Week

The Patriots held off the Bills at home, 37-31.  The Colts beat the Jaguars on the road, 27-10.

History

  • This is the 76th meeting between the Patriots and the Colts since the 1970 merger.
  • Since 2001, these teams have represented the AFC in 7 Super Bowls winning four.
  • The Patriots lead the overall series 46-29, which includes a 2-1 post season advantage.
  • The Colts have won 5 of the last 8 meetings but the Patriots have won the last two games.
  • The Patriots won the last meeting Week 13 in 2011 at Foxboro, 31-24.

Patriots Team Notes

Here is the Patriots roster, depth chart and injury report for the game.

2012 Patriots Schedule/Results

The Patriots overall franchise record is 420-368-9.  They have won three Super Bowls (XXXVI, XXXVIII, XXXIX) in seven appearances.  Overall they are 23-16 in the post season.

They last appeared in the playoffs in 2011 when they beat Denver home in the AFC Divisional Playoff, 45-10 and defeated Baltimore 23-20 in Foxboro in the AFC Championship Game.  They lost Super Bowl XLVI to the New York Giants 21-17. 

The Patriots were 13-3 (2-1 in playoffs) in 2011 and are the defending two-time AFC East Champions as well as the defending AFC Conference Champions.  They have won the division 8 times and the conference 5 times since 2000.

Since 1999 the Patriots have the best record in the NFL at 153-64.

In the last ten seasons the Patriots are 36-8 in games played November 1 or later.

New England has its first 3-game winning streak of the season.

This is the Patriots second consecutive home game.

New England is 26-12 vs. the Colts at home, 5-2 at Gillette Stadium.

This is the third straight meeting at Gillette Stadium after a streak of four in a row in Indianapolis.

The Patriots and the Colts have played each other ten years in a row despite not being in the same division since 2001.

The Patriots are now a combined 17-0 in the second half of the season since 2010.  Their last loss in the second half was in 2009 in the season finale at Houston.

This is the 7th year in a row the Patriots are 6-3 or better after 9 games.

The Patriots have lost 3 games this season by a combined total of 4 points.

The Patriots are 1st in the NFL in points per game with 33.2.  While they allow 22.3 points per game good for a tie for 15th in the NFL.

The New England defense has sacked the opponents quarterback 20 times this season while their quarterbacks have been sacked 15 times.

New England is PLUS 16 in turnover differential. The offense has given up 3 INT and 4 fumbles, while the defense has 10 INTs and 13 fumble recoveries. 

The Patriots are 64 for 129 (49.6%) in 3rd down efficiency and 1 for 3 (33.3%) on fourth down attempts.  Opponents are 50 for 112 (44.6%) in 3rd down efficiency and 5 for 11 (45.5%) on 4th down attempts.

New England is 28 of 43 (65.1%) in the red zone while opponents are 15 for 25 (60%) in the red zone in 2012.

In goal to go situations New England is 21 for 26 (80.8%) and opponents are 11 for 14 (78.6%).

Since Robert Kraft bought the team in 1994 they:

  • Have the most Super Bowl wins, 3.
  • Have the most regular season wins, 199.
  • Have the most wins including playoffs, 218.
  • Have the most conference titles, 6.
  • Have the most division titles, 11.
  • Have the most playoff wins, 19
  • Have played the most playoff games, 29.
  • Are tied for the most playoff seasons, 13.
  • Have the best playoff win percentage, .671.
  • Have drafted the most Pro Bowl players, 20.

New England set the following team records in 2011:

  • Total yards, 6,848.
  • First downs, 399.
  • Net passing yards, 5,084.
  • 100+ yard receiving games, 18.
  • Games with 30+ points, 12 (tied for most in NFL history).

Patriots Staff Notes

This is the link to head coach Bill Belichick’s Wednesday press conference on the Jets.

Bill Belichick is 12-8 vs. the Colts in his career.  He is 10-6 against them as the head coach in New England and that includes a 2-1 post season record.

Overall in his NFL career Belichick is 181-100 in his 18th NFL season.  He is 145-56 with New England and 36-44 with Cleveland.  He is 17-7 in the playoffs, 16-6 as head coach of the Patriots in the post season.  When you combine his regular season and post season records he is 198-107.

Belichick’s 198 wins are good for 8th all-time.  Former Broncos, Giants and Falcons head coach Dan Reeves is 7th with 201 wins.

Belichick is one of five head coaches in NFL history whose father (Steve Belichick) played in the league.  The others are former Kansas City head coach Todd Haley (Dick Haley), former San Francisco head coach Mike Nolan (Dick Nolan), former Cincinnati head coach David Shula (Don Shula) and former NY Jets head coach Joe Walton (Frank Walton).

Belichick is one of just four coaches to win three Super Bowls, joining Chuck Noll (4), Joe Gibbs (3) and Bill Walsh (3).  Those men are all in the Hall of Fame.

He is the only coach in NFL history to win three championship titles in four seasons.

He is the only coach in NFL history to have led his team to 10+ wins in 9 consecutive seasons.

Belichick was a special assistant for the Baltimore Colts in 1975.  It was his first NFL job.

Asst. Head Coach/Offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia was the offensive line coach for the Colts in 1989-90.

Defensive line coach Patrick Graham coached at University of Notre Dame in South Bend IN.

Patriots Possible Starters

Offense:

  • LT: Solder
  • LG: D. Thomas
  • C: Wendell
  • RG: McDonald
  • RT: Vollmer
  • TE: Gronkowski
  • TE: Hoomanawanui
  • WR: Lloyd
  • WR: Welker
  • QB: Brady
  • RB: Ridley

Defense:

  • DE: Ninkovich
  • DT: Wilfork
  • DT: Love
  • DE: Jones
  • LB: Mayo
  • LB: Spikes
  • LB: Hightower
  • LCB: McCourty
  • RCB: Talib
  • S: Gregory
  • S: Wilson

Patriots Players Notes

This is Tom Brady’s 13th NFL season he is 9-4 against Indianapolis in his career including the playoffs.  His very first NFL start came against the Colts on September 30, 2001 at Foxboro Stadium.

Overall Brady is 130-38 as a starting QB and is 16-6 in the playoffs for an overall record of 146-44.  Brady is a 7 time Pro Bowl QB; two time NFL MVP and has won 3 Super Bowls while twice being named the games MVP.  He is also listed as the 21st Greatest Player in the History of the NFL according to the NFL Network.

He was ranked in the preseason by ESPN’s Ron Jaworski as the 3rd best quarterback in the NFL.

Brady has 318 TD passes in his career he is now 5th all-time.  Hall of Famer Fran Tarkenton is 4th with 342.

Brady has 130 career wins he is 5th all-time.

Brady finished the 2011 season with 5,235 passing yards and joined Drew Brees (5,476 in 2011 and 5,069 in 2008), Dan Marino (5,084 in 1984) and Matthew Stafford (5,038 in 2011) as the only players in NFL history to reach 5,000 passing yards in a single season.

Brady has thrown for at least 1 TD in 41 consecutive games.

The Patriots are 86-16 when Brady throws at least 2 TD passes in a game.

On the season Brady is 232 of 358 (64.8%) for 2645 yards with 18 TDs and 3 INTs his QB rating is 100.1.

WR Wes Welker now has catches in 110 consecutive games including playoffs, 93 as a Patriot.  The last time Welker did not have a catch in a game was 12/24/05 as a Dolphin.

Welker leads the team with 66 catches for 810 yards.

TE Rob Gronkowski has 35 receiving touchdowns and 36 touchdowns overall (1 rushing) since 2010. The NFL record for most receiving touchdowns in a player’s first three NFL seasons is 43 by Randy Moss and the NFL record for most touchdowns overall by a player in his first three NFL seasons is 47 by Barry Sanders (4 receiving and 43 rushing).

He leads the team with 8 TDs, RB Stevan Ridley is 2nd with 6 TDs.

K Stephen Gostkowski has two field goals of 50 or more yards in 2012.  With one more he will be the first Patriots kicker with three field goals of 50 or more yards in one season.

Gostkowski (7 for 10) needs one more field goal of 50 or more yards to tie Adam Vinatieri (8 for 17) for most in team history.

RB Danny Woodhead had his first two TD game of his NFL career against Buffalo last week.

Newly acquired CB Aqib Talib is eligible for Sunday’s game after serving a league suspension for taking Adderall without a prescription/authorization.

Rookie DE Chandler Jones leads the team with 6 sacks; DE Rob Ninkovich is second with 5 sacks.

Patriots rookie record for sacks is held by Garin Veris who had 10.5 in 1985.

Jones also leads the team with 11 QB hits.

Ninkovich leads the team in forced fumbles with 4 while Jones, LB Jerod Mayo and LB Brandon Spikes have 3 forced fumbles each. 

With one more forced fumble Ninkovich will tie Mike Vrabel for the team record of 5 in one season.

Mayo leads the team in tackles through 9 weeks with 116 (69 solo).

Rookie S Tavon Wilson leads the team in INTs with 3. He has as many INT in his rookie NFL season as he did in his college career at Illinois.

McCourty also has team high 9 passes defensed in 2012. Wilson is 2nd with 5 passes defensed.

DT Vince Wilfork has 3 recovered fumbles.

He had a strip sack last Sunday against Buffalo it was the teams 5th strip sack of the season.

WR Matthew Slater has a team high 8 tackles on special teams, rookie S Nate Ebner is 2nd with 7 tackles.

There are only three players on the team who played on at least one of the Super Bowl championship teams, Brady (3), Branch (2) and Vince Wilfork (1).

Roster moves this week:

  • Signed LB Jeff Tarpinian to the practice squad
  • Signed G Mitch Petrus

On Wednesday the following players were on the injury list. G Dan Connolly (back); G Logan Mankins (ankle/calf); and WR Wes Welker (ankle) did not practice.  DT Ron Brace (back); S Patrick Chung (shoulder); S Steve Gregory (hip); TE Rob Gronkowski (hip); TE Aaron Hernandez (ankle); LB Dont’a Hightower (hamstring); WR Brandon Lloyd (knee); G Nick McDonald (shoulder); DE Trevor Scott (hamstring); LB Brandon Spikes (knee); T Sebastian Vollmer (back/knee); LB Tracy White (foot) and CB Malcolm Williams (thigh) had limited participation.  WR Julian Edelman (hand); DT Kyle Love (knee) and LB Jerod Mayo (elbow) had full participation in practice.

On Thursday the following players were on the injury list.  G Dan Connolly (back); G Logan Mankins (ankle/calf); and WR Wes Welker (ankle) did not practice.  DT Ron Brace (back); WR Deion Branch (hamstring); S Patrick Chung (shoulder); S Steve Gregory (hip); TE Rob Gronkowski (hip); TE Aaron Hernandez (ankle); LB Dont’a Hightower (hamstring); WR Brandon Lloyd (knee); G Nick McDonald (shoulder); DE Trevor Scott (hamstring); LB Brandon Spikes (knee); T Sebastian Vollmer (back/knee); LB Tracy White (foot) and CB Malcolm Williams (thigh) had limited participation.  WR Julian Edelman (hand); DT Kyle Love (knee) and LB Jerod Mayo (elbow) had full participation in practice.

The Patriots captains for 2012 are QB Tom Brady, DT Vince Wilfork, G Logan Mankins, LB Jerod Mayo, CB Devin McCourty and WR Matthew Slater (special teams).

The Patriots have 5 New England natives on the roster they are: TE Aaron Hernandez (Bristol CT); OL Donald Thomas (New Haven CT); DE Ron Brace (Worcester MA); LB Niko Koutouvides (Plainville CT) and OL Jamey Richard (Weston CT – IR).  They have 12 players who played for a New England school or a Big East Conference member.  They are CB Will Allen (Syracuse – IR); DE Ron Brace (Boston College); WR Deion Branch (Louisville); RB James Develin (Brown – Practice Squad); RB Tony Fiametta (Syracuse – Exempt List); DE Justin Francis (Rutgers); S Stephen Gregory (Syracuse); DE Chandler Jones (Syracuse); CB Devin McCourty (Rutgers); OL Donald Thomas (UConn); OL Jeremiah Warren (South Florida – Practice Squad) and NT Vince Wilfork (Miami).

The Patriots have 6 retired numbers: 20 – Gino Cappelletti, 40 – Mike Haynes, 73 – John Hannah, 78 – Bruce Armstrong, 79 – Jim Lee Hunt and 89 – Bob Dee.

Colts Team Notes

Here is the Colts roster, depth chart and injury report for the game.

2012 Colts Schedule/Results

Indianapolis' all-time record is 459-413-7 they are 19-20 in the post season with their last post season appearance coming in 2010 when they lost to the New York Jets in the AFC Division game. 

They last won the AFC Championship in 2009 by beating Baltimore in the AFC Division Card game and the New York Jets in the AFC Championship game.  They lost to New Orleans in Super Bowl XLIV, 31-17.

They have won 2 Super Bowls (V, XLI) in 4 appearances.

The Colts also won three NFL Championships while in Baltimore in 1958, 1959 and 1968.

Indianapolis has a 4 game winning streak and they have won 5 of 6 since their bye in Week 4.

Despite not being in the same division since 2001, the two teams have met at least once in 10 consecutive seasons.

Indianapolis is 2-10 as the road team since 1998.  They are 2-5 in Gillette Stadium.

Overall Indianapolis is 12-26 as the road team in the series.

The Colts are 7-17 in the last 24 games vs. the Patriots dating back to 1996.

The Colts are 22nd in the NFL in points per game with 20.7.  While they allow 22.3 points per game good for a tie for 15th in the NFL.

The Indianapolis defense has sacked the opponents quarterback 21 times this season while their quarterbacks have been sacked 21 times.

Indianapolis is MINUS 9 in turnover differential. The offense has given up 9 INT and 6 fumbles, while the defense has 4 INTs and 2 fumble recoveries. 

The Colts are 58 for 133 (43.6%) in 3rd down efficiency and 5 for 6 (83.3%) on fourth down attempts.  Opponents are 41 for 110 (37.3%) in 3rd down efficiency and 3 for 6 (50%) on 4th down attempts.

Colts Staff Notes

Read what Indianapolis Colts interim head coach Bruce Arians had to say to the New England media about the match up.

Indianapolis head coach Chuck Pagano, is in his 1st season as a NFL head coach, he was 1-2 before taking medical leave due to a cancer diagnosis.

He was previously the defensive coordinator for the Baltimore Ravens.

Pagano replaced Jim Caldwell who in 3 seasons was 28-24 including the post season and took the team to Super Bowl XLIV.

Offensive coordinator Bruce Arians is the interim head coach in Pagano’s absence.  Since taking over Arians is 5-1. 

Colts Possible Starters

Offense:

  • LT: Castonzo
  • LG: Reitz
  • C: Shipley
  • RG: McGlynn
  • RT: Linkenbach
  • TE: Saunders
  • WR: Hilton
  • WR: Wayne
  • WR: Avery
  • QB:  Luck
  • RB: Brown

Defense:

  • DE: Redding
  • DT: Johnson
  • DT: Moala
  • DE: Freeney
  • LB: Hughes
  • LB: Conner
  • LB: Freeman
  • LCB: Vaughn
  • RCB: Butler
  • S: Zbikowski
  • S: Bethea

Colts Players Notes

Colts QB Andrew Luck is in his first NFL season and he is 6-3.  Luck was the 1st overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft out of Stanford University.

Luck is 208 of 362 for 2,631 yards with 10 TDs and 9 INTs his quarterback rating is 79.1.

RB Donald Brown is the Colts leading rusher he has 361 yards on 88 carries with 1 TD.

WR Reggie Wayne leads Indianapolis in receiving with 69 catches for 931 yards and 3 TDs.  He has caught a pass in 105 consecutive regular season games.

Former Patriots K Adam Vinatieri; S Sergio Brown and CB Darius Butler return to Foxboro as Colts.

LB Dwight Freeney is from Bloomfield CT.

LB Scott Lutrus (IR) is from Brookfield CT.

LB Jerrell Freeman leads the Colts in tackles with 111 (59 solo). 

CB Darius Butler leads the team with 2 INTs.

Butler was named AFC Defensive Player of the Week for Week 10.

LB Robert Mathis leads Indianapolis with 6 sacks.

Three players each have one forced fumble on the year.

CB Jerraud Powers has 7 passes defensed the most on the Colts.

Peyton Manning’s Number 18 was retired by the Colts when he was released this past offseason.  He may possibly be the only NFL player to have his number retired while he was still active.

On Wednesday and Thursday the following players were on the injury list.  TE Colby Fleenor (shoulder) and CB Vontae Davis (knee) did not practice.  RB Donald Brown (knee); T Winston Justice (knee); LB Robert Mathis (back) and C Samson Satele (back) had full participation in practice.

Indianapolis does not have regular captains, they are appointed by the staff on a weekly basis.

There are 9 players on the Colts roster from Big East universities and New England based colleges.  They are: RB Donald Brown (UConn); CB Darius Butler (UConn); RB Delone Carter (Syracuse); T Anthony Castonzo (Boston College); DE Dwight Freeney (Syracuse); S Joe Lefeged (Rutgers); T Jeff Linkenbach (Cincinnati); G Mike McGlynn (Pittsburgh) LB Scott Lutrus (UConn – IR) and DT Ricardo Matthews (Cincinnati).

The Colts have retired the following numbers: 18 – Peyton Manning; 19 – Johnny Unitas; 22 – Buddy Young; 24 – Lenny Moore; 70 – Art Donovan; 77 – Jim Parker; 82 – Raymond Berry and 89 – Gino Marchetti.

Next Week

The Patriots visit the New York Jets on Thanksgiving night at Met Life Stadium in East Rutherford NJ.  Kick off is at 8:20 p.m. on NBC.

Follow Steve on Twitter @SteveMichaelsII

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