CINCINNATI, OH (November 21, 2012) – The New England Patriots were clicking on all cylinders as they tied the franchise single-game scoring record in a commanding week 11 victory over the INDIANAPOLIS COLTS. The Patriots have won their fourth consecutive game and extend their AFC East lead to three games. The offensive line for the Patriots set the stage for the offense to compile 446 yards on the day. They also allowed only 2 hits on Quarterback TOM BRADY (Michigan) as he threw for 331 yards and three touchdowns. Sunday's solid performance establishes the New England Patriots offensive line as a contender for the fourth annual Madden Most Valuable Protectors Award.
The Madden Most Valuable Protectors Award recognizes the backbone of every NFL team…the offensive line. John Madden, for whom the Award is named, has been praising these unsung heroes for decades and serves as the ambassador for this unique Award, honoring the best Offensive Line in the National Football League. The Award serves to celebrate the loyal teammates in the trenches that most consistently provide the time and protection that is critical to their teammates' and overall team's success.
“New England's Offensive Line did a great job setting up a balanced offensive attack,” said Pro Football Hall of Fame Coach JOHN MADDEN.
The 2012 Madden Most Valuable Protectors Award winner will be announced during the week of Super Bowl XLVII, which will be played on February 3, 2013 in New Orleans. Past Madden Most Valuable Protectors Award recipients include the New Orleans Saints (2009, 2011) and the New England Patriots (2010).
Starting in the trenches Sunday for the Patriots were tackles NATE SOLDER (Colorado) and SEBASTIAN VOLLMER (Houston); guards DONALD THOMAS (Connecticut) and NICK MCDONALD (Grand Valley State); and center RYAN WENDELL (Fresno State). Second year offensive lineman MARCUS CANNON (Texas Christian) and third year guard MITCH PETRUS (Arkansas) also made appearances in the game. DANTE SCARNECCHIA is in his 29th season with the team and serves as the Offensive Line coach for the Patriots. ROB GRONKOWSKI (Arizona) had 7 receptions for 137 yards and two touchdowns. The offensive line also paved the way for the Patriots to rush for 115 yards on the day.
Other offensive lines from around the league delivering powerful protection during Week 10 were the NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (382 total yards, 229 passing yards, 153 rushing yards, 0 sacks allowed, 4 hits on QB allowed), the WASHINGTON REDSKINS (361 total yards, 192 passing yards, 169 rushing yards, 2 sacks allowed, 4 hits on QB allowed), HOUSTON TEXANS (640 total yards, 504 passing yards, 136 rushing yards, 2 sacks allowed, 6 hits on QB allowed) TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS (403 total yards, 236 passing yards, 167 rushing yards, 1 sack allowed, 5 QB hits on QB allowed), and the CINCINNATI BENGALS (409 total yards, 220 passing yards, 189 rushing yards, 2 sacks allowed, 3 hits on QB allowed).
Previous Madden Most Valuable Protectors Award winners throughout the 2012 season are: Week 1- Washington Redskins, Week 2- Carolina Panthers, Week 3- New York Giants, Week 4- Houston Texans, Week 5- San Francisco 49ers, Week 6- New York Giants, Week 7- San Francisco 49ers, Week 8- Denver Broncos, Week 9- Indianapolis Colts, and Week 10- Minnesota Vikings.