This could be a battle for home field advantage in the playoffs in the AFC.Â The Colts are 7-0 and the Patriots are 6-1, and both have a solid lead in their division.Â This game has alot of sub-plots as Peyton Manning is only 1-7 in his career at Gillette Field (that win came last season) and Adam Vinatieri returns to Foxboro in a different uniform after helping the Pats win 3 Super Bowls.
The Colts will probably try to miss up the run and pass to keep the Patriots off-balance and keep their own defense (which is absolutely pathetic) off of the field.Â Rookie RB Joseph Addai (447 yards rushing, 5.1 ypc) is emerging as the Colts #1 RB, but he’ll find every yard tough against a Patriots defense that allows only 78.3 yards rushing and 3.4 yards per carry.Â Peyton Manning (1,965 yards passing, 15 TDs) will have to be careful against a Patriots secondary that has already picked off 8 passes this season.Â Look for Manning to try to spread the ball around and keep the defense on their toes.Â
The Patriots no doubt will be able to do whatever they want against a Colts defense that can’t stop the run or the pass.Â Look for the Patriots to run the ball alot, to limit the time Manning has the football.Â Â The Colts allow 167.9 yards rushing per game and 5.4 yards per carry!Â Rookie Laurence Maroney (395 yards rushing) and Corey Dillon (333 yards rushing) will have a field day running the ball against the Colts.Â The Colts pass defense allows opponents to complete 65.8% of their passes and have allowed 10 TD passes already.Â Tom Brady (1,598 yards passing, 14 TDs) will spread the ball around to alot of receivers (he completed the ball to 10 different receivers on Monday Night!) and keep the Colts defense off-balance.
I like the Patriots to win this game.Â The Colts haven’t played a team as good as the Patriots this season and Belichick will out-coach Tony Dungy again.