Brady was excellent completing 24 of his 35 passes for 331 yards, three touchdowns, and no interceptions while Luck completed only 27 out of 50 pass attempts for 334 yards, two touchdowns, and three interceptions.
The Patriots played well in all three phases of the game. Brady threw touchdown two touchdown passes of four and 24 yards to Rob Gronkowski as well as a two yard score to Julian Edelman. Edelman also added two punt returns that went for a combined 117 yards including a 68 yard return for a touchdown to tie the game at 14 in the second quarter. Shane Vereen and Stevan Ridley also added rushing touchdowns.
Despite some early problems the defense particularly the secondary seemed to settle down in the second half and show major improvement. The Patriots seemed unable to stop the Colt offense in the first quarter as they manufactured two 80+ yard drives for touchdowns on their first two possessions. However, in the second quarter three plays after Julian Edelman's 68 yard punt return for a touchdown newly acquired Cornerback Aqib Talib picked off an Andrew Luck pass and returned it 59 yards for a score giving the Patriots a 21-14 lead. Both teams would add field goals before half time and the Patriots went into the locker room up 24-17. After the Patriots marched down the field and scored on Julian Edelman's 2 yard touchdown grab to begin the second half, the Patriot defense forced a punt and then two consecutive turnovers including an 87 yard interception return for a touchdown by rookie corner Alfonso Dennard. In the fourth Andrew Luck threw a second touchdown to T.Y. Hilton but they were unable to muster any additional points as Tavon Wilson picked off an Andrew Luck pass and the defense forced a three and out. In spite of the early struggle the Patriot defense forced 4 turnovers and held Andrew Luck to only a 54% completion percentage. Through their first nine games, opposing quarterbacks had completed 66% of their passes against the Patriots.
The Patriots have a quick turn around this week as they play at the 4-6 Jets on Thanksgiving at 8:20 p.m.Tags: Andrew Luck, Aqib Talib, Football, Julian Edelman, New England, New England Patriots, NFL, Rob Gronkowski, Tom Brady