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Patriots return home to face the Colts

Posted Nov 29, 2011

The New England Patriots (8-3) return to the confines of Gillette Stadium to face the Indianapolis Colts (0-11) this Sunday.

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (8-3) vs. INDIANAPOLIS COLTS (0-11)
Sunday, December 4, 2011 at 1:00 p.m. ET
Gillette Stadium (68,756)


Game Release PDF >>


The New England Patriots return to the confines of Gillette Stadium to face the Indianapolis Colts this Sunday. Despite not being in the same division, the Patriots and Colts will play each other for the ninth straight year in the regular season. The Patriots head into their first December game of the 2011 with an NFL-best 37-5 record in the month of December since the 2001 season. New England is 18-1 at home in December since Gillette Stadium opened in 2002, including 17 straight wins. While Indianapolis is off to a rough start in 2011, this week's game is a battle against two of the top teams since the 2000 season. New England (148-58) has the best record since 2000, followed by Pittsburgh (135-68-1) and Indianapolis (134-71).

BROADCAST INFORMATION

TELEVISION: This week's game will be broadcast to a regional audience by CBS and can be seen in Boston on WBZ-TV Channel 4. Marv Albert will handle playby- play duties with Rich Gannon providing color. The game will be produced by Ross Schneiderman and directed by Mark Grant.

NATIONAL RADIO: This week's game will be broadcast to a national audience by Sports USA Radio Network. Larry Kahn and Ross Tucker will call the game. Troy West will provide sideline analysis.

RADIO: 98.5 FM, The Sports Hub, is the flagship station for the Patriots Radio Network. A complete listing of the network's 37 stations can be found in this press release. Play-by-play broadcaster Gil Santos is in his 35th season as the voice of the Patriots and will call the action along with Patriots Hall of Famer Gino Cappelletti. Scott Zolak will provide sideline analysis.

SERIES HISTORY

The Patriots and Colts will face off for the 12th time since 2003 and for the 75th time in the history of the franchises. The clubs have clashed in each of the last eight regular seasons (2003-10) and also faced each other in the playoffs following the 2003, 2004 and 2006 seasons.

The two teams share a long-time rivalry, as the Patriots and the Baltimore/Indianapolis Colts played twice each year from 1970 to 2001 as members of the AFC East, with the exception of the 1982 strike season. New England is 19-10 against Indianapolis since 1993, and has won 15 of the series' last 22 games. The games have tended to be high-scoring affairs, as the Patriots have scored 20 or more points against the Colts in 19 of their last 21 meetings.

New England holds an overall record of 14-9 in games played in Indianapolis and 25-12 when playing at home. The Patriots snapped a two-game losing streak to the Colts with a 31-28 victory on Nov. 21 at Gillette Stadium.

SERIES TRENDS

Overall Record (including 2-1 in playoffs): 45-29

Overall at Home: 25-12
- in Foxborough: 25-11
- in Boston: 0-1

Overall on Road: 20-17
- in Indianapolis: 14-9
- in Baltimore: 6-8

Largest Victory: 39 points (10/06/74)
Largest Defeat: -31 points (11/26/72)
Highest Combined Point Total: 72 points (11/30/03 and 1/21/07)
Lowest Combined Point Total: 6 points (12/06/92)
Longest Winning Streak: 7 (1996-99)
Longest Losing Streak: 3 (1970-71, 2005-07)
Seasonal Sweeps of 2 or more wins: Patriots 12, Colts 5

PATRIOTS - COLTS QUICK HITS
  • The Patriots and Colts both surpassed the 1990s San Francisco 49ers for the all-time best mark for a decade in NFL history. New England had 126 wins in the decade from 2000- 2009, while Indianapolis had 124 wins. San Francisco had 122 wins in the 1990s.
  • Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick is 9-6 against the Colts as the head coach of the Patriots and is 11-8 against Indianapolis as a head coach overall.
  • Despite not being in the same division, the Patriots and Colts will play each other for the ninth straight season.

CONNECTIONS

New England Ties
  • Rookie T Anthony Castonzo attended Boston College from 2007-11. In 2007, Castonzo started as a true freshman on the offensive line, the first time a freshman has done so since 1998. Castonzo was drafted 22nd overall in the 2011 draft.

Former Patriots
  • K Adam Vinatieri played with the Patriots from 1996-2005 and won three Super Bowl titles with New England. Vinatieri kicked 18 game winning field goals for the Patriots with less than a minute remaining and is known around New England for his game winning final second kicks in Super Bowl XXXVI and XXXVIII. LB A.J. Edds was claimed off waivers by the Patriots on Sept. 6 after being released the previous day by the Miami Dolphins. Edds was signed off the Patriots practice squad on Sept. 28 by the Colts.
  • T Quinn Ojinnaka was traded to the Patriots on Aug. 23, 2010 from the Atlanta Falcons for a seventh round pick in the 2011 draft. He was active for eight games during the 2010, all in a reserve role.

Former Teammates
  • DE Mark Anderson and DB Antwaun Molden played with TE Anthony Hill in Houston during the 2010 season. OL Donald Thomas and TE Dedrick Epps played together for the Miami Dolphins during the 2010 season.
  • WR Chad Ochocinco, QB Dan LeFevour, DB Trent Morgan, and RB Fui Vakapuna were teammates in Cincinnati during the 2010 season.
  • LB Rob Ninkovich played some at tight end in college at Purdue and caught a 1-yard touchdown pass from current Indianapolis QB Curtis Painter.

Former Colts
  • Patriots head coach Bill Belichick began his NFL coaching career as a special assistant for the Baltimore Colts in 1975 under head coach Ted Marchibroda.
  • Assistant head coach/offensive line Dante Scarnecchia was the offensive line coach for the Colts for two seasons from 1989-90.

FAMILY TIES
  • TE Rob Gronkowski played with his brother FB Chris Gronkowski from 2007-09 at the University of Arizona. Chris Gronkowski transferred to Arizona to play linebacker, but then switched back into RB/FB roll during the 2008-09 seasons.

RECENT PATRIOTS-COLTS GAMES
The Patriots have won 16 of the last 23 games between the clubs, dating back to the 1996 season.

PASSING PERFORMANCES
Tom Brady's very first NFL start was against the Colts on Sept. 30, 2001 at Foxboro Stadium. He finished 13-of-23 for 168 yards in a 44-13 Patriots win. Brady owns a 6-3 record in the regular season against Indianapolis and 2-1 record in the postseason. He has thrown three touchdowns against the Colts in five of those games. He is 3-2 in the regular-season in home games, and 2-0 at home in the postseason.

STRONG IN THE SECOND HALF
Since 2001, New England has done a remarkable job of finishing the season strong, compiling an NFL-best 62-15 (.805) record in games on or after Thanksgiving, including a 6-1 record in 2010.

HOME RECORD IN DECEMBER SINCE 2002
With an 18-1 record, the New England Patriots have the best home record in December since Gillette Stadium opened in 2002.

NFL'S TOP DECEMBER RECORD SINCE 2001
The Patriots have an NFL-best 37-5 record in the month of December since the 2001 season, including a 4-0 record in 2010.

NFL'S BEST AT HOME
Since their state-of-the-art facility opened at the beginning of the 2002 season, the Patriots own the NFL's best record at home overall. The Patriots own an overall record of 64-13 (.831) at Gillette Stadium in regular season games and a 71-15 record including playoffs.

PATRIOTS ARE SHARP AT GILLETTE
The Patriots concluded a 20-game home winning streak with a 24-20 loss to the New York Giants on Nov. 6, 2011. It was the longest home win streak in team history. The Patriots own an overall record of 64-13 (.831) at Gillette Stadium in regular season games. Since their state-of-the-art facility opened at the beginning of the 2002 season, the Patriots own the NFL's best record at home all-time.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS

BY THE NUMBERS

2
The number of interceptions by Vince Wilfork in 2011. Anthony Pleasant (2001) is the only other Patriots defensive lineman to record two interceptions in the same season.

2
The number of punts returned by Julian Edelman for touchdowns during his career, the fourth Patriots' player with two or more punt returns for a touchdown.

7
The number of interceptions by Kyle Arrington to lead the NFL in 2011. His seven interceptions are more than the total for five other teams and ties the totals for two others.

8
The number of times in NFL history a player reached 1,000 yards in the ninth game of the season after Wes Welker reached the milestone.

9.0
The number of sacks by Andre Carter in 2011, putting himself in position for his fourth 10-plus sack season.

11
The number of touchdown catches by TE Rob Gronkowski in 2011. The NFL record for a tight end is 13.

16
The number of touchdown receptions by the Patriots tight ends - Rob Gronkowski (11) and Aaron Hernandez (5).

21
The number of touchdown receptions by Rob Gronkowski since 2010, the most among all NFL tight ends.

20
The number of 10-tackle games by LB Jerod Mayo after he finished with a team-high 11 total tackles vs. Kansas City (11/21/11).

26
The number of games it took Rob Gronkowski to reach 20 touchdowns, the fewest games among tight ends in NFL history.

48
The number of yards Wes Welker (5,679) needs to move past Irving Fryar (5,726) into third place on the Patriots all-time list.

34
The number of consecutive fourth quarter field goals made by Stephen Gostkowski, the most since the statistic began to be tracked in 1991.

622
The number of total yards by the Patriots in the win at Miami in the season opener, a franchise record. The previous best was 619 yards vs. Tennessee (10/18/09).

TOM BRADY BY THE NUMBERS

1
Tom Brady became the first player to follow a 500-yard performance with a 400-yard performance after Brady had backto- back games with 517 yards and 423 yards.

2
Brady joins Drew Brees (2011) as the only players to reach 3,000 yards in the first nine games of the season. Brady (3,032) had the most yards ever through the first nine games of the year.

4
The number of times that Brady has thrown a game-winning touchdown pass in the final minute of the game to turn a deficit into a Patriots win after a final-minute touchdown vs. Dallas (10/16), including the postseason.

7
The number of times that Brady has finished a season with 25 or more touchdowns. He is the fourth QB in NFL history to have 25 or more touchdown passes in at least seven different seasons.

9
The number of times Tom Brady has passed for 3,000 or more yards in a season, a franchise record for most 3,000-yard seasons. He enters this week with 3,627 passing yards.

11
Tom Brady was the 11th quarterback in NFL history to throw for 500 or more yards after he passed Brady for 517 in the 2011 opener at Miami.

19
The number of times Tom Brady has earned AFC Offensive Player of the Week honors. He earned the award in each of the first two weeks of the 2011 season.

18
The number of NFL quarterbacks who have reached 35,000 yards after Brady (38,371) reached the milestone at Miami (9/12).

41
The number of regular season 300-yard passing games by Tom Brady, a team record.

92
The number of times that Brady has thrown two or more touchdowns in a game. The Patriots are 77-15 when he throws for two or more touchdowns.

119
The number of wins that Brady has as a starting quarterback. He reached the 100-win milestone in the fewest number of starts (131) among all quarterbacks in the modern era.

1,327
The number of passing yards Brady had in the first three games (517, 423 and 387) of 2011. Brady's 1,327 yards set the NFL mark for the most passing yards ever in a three-game stretch.

THE KRAFT ERA

3
The number of Super Bowl championships the Patriots have won since Robert Kraft purchased the team in 1994. That mark is the highest total in the NFL over that span. Only Denver (2; 1997 and 1998) and Pittsburgh (2; 2005 and 2008) have won multiple Super Bowl titles since 1994.

5
The number of conference championships the Patriots have won since Robert Kraft purchased the team in 1994. That mark is the highest total in the NFL over that span. Pittsburgh is second with three conference titles since 1994.

10
The number of division championships won by the Patriots since Kraft purchased the team in 1994.

12
The number of playoff seasons earned by the Patriots in the 17 seasons since Robert Kraft purchased the team.

17
The number of playoff games the Patriots have won since Robert Kraft purchased the team in 1994. That mark is the highest total in the NFL over that span. Pittsburgh ranks second with 15 playoff wins over that span.

26
The number of playoff games the Patriots have appeared in since 1994. The mark is tied with Pittsburgh for the most playoff games during that time period.

THE BELICHICK ERA

4
Bill Belichick is one of just four coaches to win three championships since the Super Bowl era began. Belichick joins three members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame in the exclusive club (Chuck Noll 4, Joe Gibbs 3 and Bill Walsh 3). Belichick is the only coach to win three Super Bowls in the post-1993 salary cap era and the only one to ever win three in four years.

185
Bill Belichick has 185 career victories as a head coach, including playoff games. Belichick moved past Bill Parcells into sole possession of ninth place in all-time coaching victories.

PATRIOTS DEDICATE 2011 SEASON TO MYRA KRAFT
The Patriots have dedicated the 2011 season to the loving memory of Myra Kraft, who passed away on July 20 after a courageous battle with cancer. Every Patriots player and coach are honoring Myra's memory by wearing a patch with her initials on it in recognition of her lifelong contributions to the local and global philanthropic community and her influence on the charitable mission of the entire Patriots organization. The patch will be worn on the left chest of every player throughout the season.

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