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Indianapolis at New England

Manning, Colts knock off AFC nemesis, improve to 8-0

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Last week, Peyton Manning played "The King." On Monday night, he played like the King of the NFL, leading the Indianapolis Colts over their personal Everest.

Maybe now, after routing the New England Patriots 40-21 on Monday night, they'll admit this could be a super season.

Manning shrugged off his 0-7 record at Foxborough with an intelligent dissection of the two-time defending champions. Aided by star running back Edgerrin James' 104 yards on 34 carries, and 100-yard receiving games from Marvin Harrison and Reggie Wayne, Manning kept the Colts perfect through eight games, the league's only undefeated team.

Instead of concentrating on this game the way much of the nation was, Manning spent his bye week watching brother Eli quarterback the Giants against Washington, then attending a Halloween party thrown by Eli. Peyton's getup: Elvis.

"Nobody recognized it was me, either," he said with a hardy laugh -- perhaps the first time he's ever smiled after a game in Massachusetts. "I guess my secret is out."

Whatever secret formula the Patriots held against Indianapolis wasn't evident this time. Manning believed jumping in front was crucial.

"We wanted to execute and get a lead on this team. We haven't had a lead on this team in a long time," Manning said. "The idea is to try to dictate to the defense."

While the Patriots have struggled mightily with injuries, an undependable running game and a leaky defense, their hex over the Colts was the major theme. But the Patriots (4-4) were the inferior team Monday.

"We got our butts kicked tonight," Brady said in a short statement before hustling out of a news conference.

New England still leads the AFC East, which doesn't put them within shouting distance of the Colts, who looked mature, savvy and resourceful, all elements they have lacked against the Pats in recent years.

The last time Indianapolis was here, in January, it managed all of three points in a divisional playoff game. This time, the Colts' vastly upgraded defense hit harder and forced the pace, while the offense was versatile and unflappable.

"I think we are more of a team and kind of feed off each other," Manning said. "It's definitely the best camaraderie we've had since I've been here eight years."

Manning was 28-of-37 for 321 yards and three touchdowns. He guided the Colts, who are 5-0 on the road, to scores on seven of eight possessions. Indy didn't punt until the final two minutes and scored its most points ever against the Patriots.

The Colts, who have downplayed their great start this season, were so skillful this night they even forced Bill Belichick into some desperate measures. After Daniel Graham turned a tight end screen into a 31-yard touchdown midway in the third quarter, New England's coach ordered an onside kick. It was recovered by the Colt's Joseph Jefferson, who advanced it to the Patriots 22.

Indianapolis managed only Mike Vanderjagt's 35-yard field goal, and Belichick remained emboldened. The Patriots went for a fourth-and-4 at the Indy 43, but Brady threw too low for David Givens.

"It's pitiful. It's embarrassing," linebacker Rosevelt Colvin said. "We've got to get it right and we've got to get it right fast.

"They showed why they're pretty much the best team in the league."

Vanderjagt added a 20-yard field goal before Manning capped it with an on-the-run throw that descended directly into Harrison's hands in the end zone despite tight coverage by Asante Samuel.

Harrison had nine catches for 128 yards and Wayne had nine for 124. The Colts held the ball for 36:41.

The offensive showcase began immediately when Manning hit Harrison for 48 yards, then threw him a fade pass in the right corner of the end zone over Samuel for a 1-yard touchdown.

"That play to Marvin was really big," Manning said.

New England tied it on a 16-yard TD catch by Super Bowl MVP Deion Branch, but James' 2-yard run made it 14-7.

Nearing the end of the half, New England unnerved Manning for perhaps the only time with a blitz. Manning unwisely threw off his back foot to avoid a sack and Mike Vrabel picked it off at the Patriots 47.

New England returned the favor, however, after reaching the Indy 17. Bob Sanders knocked the ball out of Corey Dillon's hands directly to Jason David.

Using the hurry-up offense to perfection, Manning took up nearly all the remaining 2:07 on a nine-play, 73-yard drive. He capped it by hitting Wayne with a precise pass into the left corner of the end zone for a 10-yard TD just nine seconds before halftime, making it 21-7.

After New England held the ball a mere 29 seconds after the second-half kickoff, Manning engineered an 11-play, 60-yard series highlighted by the two-time MVP's 18-yard scramble on third-and-5. Dominic Rhodes ran in from the 4.

Not even the second game for Tedy Bruschi, New England's Pro Bowl linebacker returning from a mild stroke, could help the Patriots this night. Not against a Colts team that no longer can play it low-key.


  • The win made Colts coach Tony Dungy 51-0 when his team has led by at least 14 points.
  • Brady lost to the Colts for the first time in seven meetings. He finished 22-of-33 for 265 yards.
Copyright 2016 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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Peyton Manning gets his first win in Foxborough in eight tries, tossing three TDs and 321 yards.
Peyton Manning gets his first win in Foxborough in eight tries, tossing three TDs and 321 yards. (Getty Images)


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Scoring Summary
TDMarvin Harrison, 1 Yd pass from Peyton Manning (Mike Vanderjagt kick is good), 12:30. Drive: 5 plays, 54 yards in 2:30.
TDDeion Branch, 16 Yd pass from Tom Brady (Adam Vinatieri kick is good), 5:52. Drive: 11 plays, 69 yards in 6:38.
TDEdgerrin James, 2 Yd run (Mike Vanderjagt kick is good), 11:50. Drive: 17 plays, 68 yards in 9:02.
TDReggie Wayne, 10 Yd pass from Peyton Manning (Mike Vanderjagt kick is good), 0:09. Drive: 9 plays, 73 yards in 1:58.
TDDominic Rhodes, 4 Yd run (Mike Vanderjagt kick is good), 8:36. Drive: 11 plays, 60 yards in 5:55.
TDDaniel Graham, 31 Yd pass from Tom Brady (Adam Vinatieri kick is good), 5:46. Drive: 8 plays, 73 yards in 2:50.
FGMike Vanderjagt 35 Yd, 4:45. Drive: 4 plays, 5 yards in 1:01.
FGMike Vanderjagt 20 Yd, 13:58. Drive: 10 plays, 54 yards in 3:37.
TDTroy Brown, 19 Yd pass from Tom Brady (Adam Vinatieri kick is good), 10:15. Drive: 8 plays, 69 yards in 3:43.
TDMarvin Harrison, 30 Yd pass from Peyton Manning (Peyton Manning 2 Pt. Conversion pass to Reggie Wayne failed), 5:53. Drive: 7 plays, 74 yards in 4:22.
Players of the Game
New England

T. Brady
Att 33
Comp 22
Yds 265
TD 3

P. Manning
Att 37
Comp 28
Yds 321
TD 3
P. Manning28/3732131
E. James3410419
P. Manning324012
D. Rhodes1414
M. Harrison9128248
R. Wayne9124129
B. Stokley434013
B. Fletcher222016
E. James3906
D. Clark1404
New England
T. Brady22/3326530
D. Flutie3/72000
C. Dillon1240013
T. Brady1-10-1
M. Cloud1-50-5
D. Givens464035
D. Branch558117
T. Brown557119
D. Graham541131
B. Watson336023
C. Dillon329016
Complete Player Stats
Other Games
PHI 10 Final
WAS 17
PIT 20 Final
GB 10
NYG 24 Final
SF 6
SEA 33 Final
ARI 19
CAR 34 Final
TB 14
SD 31 Final
NYJ 26
CHI 20 Final
NO 17
DET 14 Final
MIN 27
ATL 17 Final
MIA 10
OAK 23 Final
KC 27
HOU 14 Final
JAC 21
TEN 14 Final
CLE 20
CIN 21 Final