Patriots-Broncos Live: Pats Decisive Winners In Latest Edition Of Brady Vs. Manning

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20141:49pm

1:45 p.m.: The snow in Foxboro, Mass., is starting to tail off, but the winds continue to be heavy, which could affect both New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning’s performances.

Winds are expected to gust up to 20 MPH for the game, which kicks off at 4:25 p.m. Brady historically has been much better with severe weather.

Check out Brady and Manning’s career stats with 20-plus mph winds compared to those of Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning, per NFL Media research:

Brady: 282 of 445, 63.4 completion percentage, 3,167 yards (243.6 per game), 27 touchdowns, four interceptions, 101.0 passer rating, 11-2 record

Manning: 179 of 307 passing, 58.3 completion percentage, 1,776 yards (222.0 per game), five touchdowns, nine interceptions, 68.0 passer rating, 3-5 record

Broncos players have taken the field — all bundled up — and are beginning to warm up in the wintery weather.

Since the Gillette Stadium facilities crew had to plow the game field, all of the rubber pellets on the field turf were kicked up, and the playing surface is looking pretty disgusting.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20142:54pm

2:55 p.m.: It looks like safety/special teamer Nate Ebner might be making his return to the field despite being questionable with a finger injury. Ebner was warming up on the field with the rest of the Patriots’ defensive backs.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20143:03pm

3:02 p.m.: The Patriots’ inactives are out.

Cornerback Alfonzo Dennard, running back James White, defensive end Chandler Jones, offensive linemen Jordan Devey and Cameron Fleming, wide receiver Aaron Dobson and defensive end Zach Moore are inactive for the Patriots.

Broncos running backs Montee Ball and Kapri Bibbs, defensive back Quinton Carter, linebacker Steven Jackson, offensive linemen Ben Garland and Michael Schofield and tight end Virgil Green also are inactive.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20143:31pm

3:31 p.m.: Dennard’s deactivation for the second straight week is surprising. He hasn’t been listed on the injury report, so he’s a healthy scratch once again.

Newly acquired defensive tackle Alan Branch and linebacker Jonathan Casillas are active, which also is a bit of a shock. Branch only practiced twice this week, and Casillas came to the team on Wednesday.

I’d expect Branch to get around 10 snaps on defense. Casillas likely will play special teams and maybe some linebacker in nickel or dime. At 6-foot-1, 227 pounds, he’s not much of a run stuffer.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20143:49pm

3:47 p.m.: Tom Brady and Jimmy Garoppolo took the field to Jay Z’s “Public Service Announcement,” as usual.

They’re warming up with the Patriots’ receivers right now.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20143:50pm

3:50 p.m.: The Patriots will honor their three-time Super Bowl winning champs at halftime this evening.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20144:05pm

4:02 p.m.: Here’s the Patriots’ starting defense based on warmups:

DL: Vince Wilfork, Chris Jones, Rob Ninkovich, Dominique Easley
LB: Dont’a Hightower, Jamie Collins, Akeem Ayers
DB: Darrelle Revis, Brandon Browner, Patrick Chung, Devin McCourty

Ayers played 30+ snaps last week, but he only received such heavy playing time because the Patriots were blowing out the Bears. Hightower praised his high football IQ this week, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see him play more and in different roles. He was used as a pass rusher last week. This week, it looks like he’ll be playing more of a traditional linebacker role.

Here’s the projected Patriots’ starting offense:

QB: Tom Brady
RB: Shane Vereen
WR: Julian Edelman, Brandon LaFell, Danny Amendola
TE: Rob Gronkowski
OL: Nate Solder, Dan Connolly, Bryan Stork, Ryan Wendell, Sebastian Vollmer

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20144:18pm

4:18: The Patriots were just introduced, and wide receiver Julian Edelman did his usual fist pump to the south end zone.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20144:22pm

First quarter, 15:00: We’re getting ready for kickoff here. Captains Wilfork, McCourty, Connolly and Matthew Slater are ready to take the field for the coin toss. Former Patriots defensive end Willie McGinest also was out for the toss.

The Patriots won the toss and chose to defer. They will defend the north goal.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20144:25pm

First quarter, 15:00: We’re getting ready for kickoff here. Captains Wilfork, McCourty, Connolly and Matthew Slater are ready to take the field for the coin toss. Former Patriots defensive end Willie McGinest also was out for the toss.

The Patriots won the toss and chose to defer. They will defend the north goal.

Stephen Gostkowski’s kick went out of the end zone for a touchback. The Broncos take the ball on their own 20.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20144:30pm

First quarter, 12:16: The Patriots came out and shut down the Broncos’ offense for a three-and-out. Ayers started at defensive end for the Patriots. Ronnie Hillman ran for three yards, and Peyton Manning completed a 5-yard pass to Emmanuel Sanders after being flagged for a delay of game.

The Gillette Stadium crowd is rocking early.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20144:34pm

First quarter, 10:29: The Patriots only were able to manage one first down on their initial offensive drive. Brady completed passes to fullback James Develin and Brandon LaFell and missed on throws to LaFell (2) and running back Jonas Gray.

Slater let Ryan Allen’s punt bounce into the end zone, and the Broncos have the ball on their own 20. The Patriots’ failure to get anything going on their first offensive drive could come back to haunt them. They need to get out to a fast start, and their defense (and crowd) got the job done early.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20144:38pm

First quarter, 9:07: Another drive, another three-and-out for the Patriots’ defense. Vince Wilfork and Jamie Collins have been active on defense so far. Cornerback Brandon Browner deflected a pass intended for wideout Demaryius Thomas. The Patriots’ cornerbacks are playing sides, not matchups so far.

Amendola, who taken over punt return duties from Edelman, was interfered with on a fair catch, so the Patriots take over at the Broncos’ 39-yard line.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20144:43pm

First quarter, 7:09, Patriots 3-0: New England jumps out to the 3-0 lead on a 49-yard field goal from Stephen Gostkowski.

Gray ran for four yards on that drive, and Brady completed a 4-yard pass to Edelman.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20144:45pm

Nice job by the Gillette Stadium grounds crew:

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20144:53pm

First quarter, 3:54, Broncos 7-3: Denver takes the lead after a rough drive for Revis, who allowed three completions for 56 yards.

The Broncos wound up on the 1-yard line when Browner was flagged for a questionable pass interference call. Browner had his hand behind Demaryius Thomas’ back when he made a beautiful pass breakup. Ronnie Hillman ran in easily from 1-yard out.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20144:59pm

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20145:03pm

End first quarter, Broncos 7-3: The Patriots are driving down the field thanks to some solid play by Gronkowski. Gronkowski has three catches for 38 yards on this drive.

Stork continues to show some shakiness at center. Brady had to one-hand a shotgun snap from the rookie, and the QB had to take a 1-yard loss on a sack after the play broke down.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20145:06pm

Second quarter, 14:19, Broncos 7-6: The Patriots had to settle for a 29-yard field goal from Gostkowski after LaFell dropped a touchdown in the end zone.

LaFell made the diving grab, but the ball flew out as he rolled on the ground.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20145:10pm

Second quarter, 13:34, Broncos 7-6: I was just about to criticize Ninkovich’s coverage, then Manning threw a pass right at him for a key interception, followed by an 11-yard return.

Patriots have the ball in Broncos territory.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20145:14pm

Second quarter, 11:41, Patriots 13-7: Nink’s INT led to a big Patriots score.

The Patriots went 34 yards on four plays. Brady hit Edelman for a 5-yard touchdown after Broncos linebacker Brandon Marshall was flagged for holding Gronk in the end zone.

Edelman has been a big part of the game plan after having two drops in consecutive weeks.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20145:28pm

Second quarter, 8:11, Patriots 20-7: The Patriots forced a big stop on third down with rookie cornerback Malcolm Butler in coverage, then Julian Edelman made the crowd go INSANE on an 84-yard punt return touchdown.

Edelman weaved his way through Broncos specialists for the TD, and the Patriots have jumped out to a two-score lead. It was Edelman’s fourth career punt return for a touchdown — a new Patriots record.

Edelman has two scores on the evening after catching a 5-yard touchdown pass from Brady on the Patriots’ last offensive drive.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20145:38pm

Second quarter, 5:25, Patriots 20-7: After two great plays by Kyle Arrington on defense, covering Wes Welker, the Broncos had to settle for a field goal — and they missed.

Brandon McManus’ attempt doinked off the right upright, and the Patriots have the ball on their own 31-yard line.

The Patriots briefly replaced Chung on defense with Butler, shifting Browner to safety, and Butler was burned repeatedly by Manning. Chung came back in, shifting Browner outside to cornerback, and all was right in the world.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20145:42pm

Second quarter, 4:46, Patriots 20-7: The Patriots had a chance to put a small dagger — not a full-size one — in the Broncos, but they went three-and-out after two incompletions from Brady.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20145:48pm

Second quarter, 2:05, Patriots 20-7: The Broncos took a risk, going for it on fourth and 6, and Ayers made them pay, sacking Manning for a 9-yard loss.

The Patriots traded a sixth-round pick to the Tennessee Titans for Ayers and a seventh-rounder last week. He’s been a steal, starting at right defensive end and recording two sacks over the past two weeks.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20145:50pm

Here’s Edelman’s 84-yard return for the touchdown.

Broncos punter Britton Colquitt muffed the long snap, then only had 3.69 seconds of hangtime, which didn’t allow his coverage unit to make it all the way downfield.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20145:58pm

Second quarter, 0:33, Patriots 20-7: The officials just reviewed a 5-yard touchdown pass from Brady to Edelman, but it was called back. Edelman did appear to drop the pass.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20146:00pm

Second quarter, 0:08, Patriots 27-7: The Patriots needed to score to end the half, and they did. And now they’ll get the ball to start the second half, as well, since they deferred to start the game.

Brady hit Edelman in the middle of the end zone for a 4-yard touchdown.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20146:02pm

End half, Patriots 27-7: This game has gone about as well as humanly possible for the Patriots.

They lead by 20 going into the half, and they’ll get the ball back to start the third quarter.

Brady is 18-of-27 passing for 178 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions. Manning is 16-of-27 passing for 178 yards with one touchdown and one interception.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20146:10pm

End half, Patriots 27-7: This game has gone about as well as humanly possible for the Patriots.

They lead by 20 going into the half, and they’ll get the ball back to start the third quarter.

Brady is 18-of-27 passing for 178 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions. Manning is 16-of-27 passing for 178 yards with zero touchdowns and one interception.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20146:17pm

Third quarter, 15:00, Patriots 27-7: We’re back after the half. Amendola caught McManus’ kickoff for a touchback.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20146:22pm

Third quarter, 13:30, Patriots 27-7: The Patriots started out the drive with an 18-yard completion to LaFell, but their offense then stalled. The drive ended with Brady throwing an interception to Bradley Roby on third and 10. Brady was trying to get rid of the ball with pressure bearing down, and the pass deflected of Amendola’s hands and into Roby’s. The throw was very high to Amendola.

The Broncos have the ball on their own 43-yard line.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20146:27pm

Third quarter, 11:06, Patriots 27-14: And just like that, it’s a game again.

The Broncos drove down the field, and Manning capped it all off with a perfect 18-yard touchdown pass to tight end Julius Thomas over Chung.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20146:39pm

Third quarter, 7:46, Patriots 30-14: The Patriots took a risk by going for it on fourth and 5 after Vereen had a costly drop on third down, and it worked out. The Patriots converted, then had to settle for a 45-yard field goal.

Patriots receivers have dropped five passes in this game.

Neither team has established the run. Vereen leads the game with 17 yards on five carries. The Patriots are averaging 2.0 yards per carry, and the Broncos are averaging 1.8. What wind?

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20146:41pm

Third quarter, 7:27, Patriots 37-14: The game might officially have swung. 

Welker dropped a pass and it flew up in the air into Browner’s waiting arms. Browner returned the ball to the 10-yard line, and Brady immediately hit LaFell for a touchdown.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20146:54pm

Third quarter, 5:50, Patriots 37-21: The Broncos aren’t ready to roll over just yet. The Patriots allowed Denver to coast down the field after being called for three straight penalties.

Hillman scored on a 15-yard pass from Manning.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20147:00pm

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20147:06pm

End third quarter, Patriots 37-21: The Patriots are having success with an extended drive. They’re made it to the Broncos’ 25-yard line in 5:50.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20147:13pm

Fourth quarter, 13:57, Patriots 43-21: Gronk might have just made the best catch of his career. The big tight end pulled in Brady’s throw, slightly errant, with one hand while being hit by safety T.J. Ward.

Brady hit Gronk on the next play for a 1-yard TD. The Patriots lead by 22 points after a failed two-point conversion.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20147:21pm

Fourth quarter, 11:20, Patriots 43-21: The Broncos just went for it on fourth and goal on the 8-yard line, and a tremendous play in coverage by Chung prevented the touchdown.

The Patriots now are backed up, but they lead by three scores with 11:20 left in the game.

Peyton Manning is 25-of-42 passing for 356 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions. Brady is 31-of-49 passes for 320 yards with four touchdowns and one interception.

Doug Kyed Sun, Nov 2, 20147:24pm

Fourth quarter, 10:23, Patriots 43-21: The Patriots, backed up in their own end zone, went three-and-out after two incompletions to start the drive.

The Broncos have the ball at their own 16-yard line after a block in the back during Ryan Allen’s punt. Allen’s punt traveled 67 yards.

Zack Cox Sun, Nov 2, 20147:25pm

Fourth quarter, 10:23, Patriots 43-21: The Broncos just announced that Wes Welker (back) will not return. He left the game in the third quarter after taking a big hit from Devin McCourty.

Zack Cox Sun, Nov 2, 20147:32pm

Fourth quarter, 8:43, Patriots 43-21: The Broncos tried to pick on rookie Malcolm Butler on their latest drive, but the young corner held strong. 

After a 24-yard gain by running back C.J. Anderson, Peyton Manning threw Butler’s way on three straight plays. He only was able to connect on one, though, and that 4-yard gain was not enough to pick up a first down. 

The Patriots will take over on downs. 

Zack Cox Sun, Nov 2, 20147:40pm

Fourth quarter, 6:13, Patriots 43-21: After pulling a full-team line change on fourth and 1 and drawing a false start penalty, the Patriots decide to just punt it away. Ryan Allen’s boot is fair-caught at the Denver 15-yard line. 

Zack Cox Sun, Nov 2, 20147:48pm

Fourth quarter, 3:04, Patriots 43-21: Peyton Manning’s attempt to hit Emmanuel Sanders in the end zone on fourth and 1 falls incomplete, and the Patriots take over. 

It looks like this one is just about over. 

Zack Cox Sun, Nov 2, 20147:52pm

Fourth quarter, 2:00, Patriots 43-21: As we reach the two-minute warning, the Patriots are looking at a third and 5 from the Broncos’ 45-yard line. 

Zack Cox Sun, Nov 2, 20147:55pm

Fourth quarter, 1:42, Patriots 43-21: Ryan Allen’s punt goes into the end zone. Peyton Manning will have one more chance. 

Zack Cox Sun, Nov 2, 20147:58pm

Final, Patriots 43-21: And that will do it. 

The clock ticks down to triple zeroes on a thoroughly impressive Patriots win. 

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