Patriots Rout Colts And Earn Another Trip To The Super Bowl
Bill Belichick and Tom Brady are headed to a special place where no coach or player has gone more — the Super Bowl.
They earned their trip with the second most lopsided AFC championship victory ever.
The New England Patriots dominant duo earned a sixth trip to the Super Bowl with a 45-7 wipeout of the Indianapolis Colts in the AFC championship game before a raucous, rain-soaked crowd Sunday night.
The Patriots tied Dallas and Pittsburgh for most appearances in the big game with eight.
Scoring touchdowns on their first four second-half possessions, the Patriots (14-4) moved on to face defending champion Seattle (14-4) for the NFL title on Feb. 1 in Glendale, Arizona. Belichick will face Pete Carroll, whom he replaced as Patriots coach 2000. The Seahawks beat the Green Bay Packers 28-22 in overtime in the NFC title game.
In his first year as a starter, Brady led the Patriots to a Super Bowl win in the 2001 season, starting a run of three championships in four years. Now he and Belichick have a chance for their first in 10 years.
Brady threw three touchdown passes, LeGarrette Blount ran 30 times for 148 yards and three scores and the Patriots charged away after leading just 17-7 at halftime.
With his sixth Super Bowl berth, Brady surpassed John Elway for the most by a quarterback and tied defensive lineman Mike Lodish for most by any player. Belichick's sixth visit tied him with Don Shula's for most by a coach.
Brady completed 23 of 35 passes for 226 yards before being replaced by Jimmy Garoppolo with 3:20 left. Brady went to the sideline where he was embraced by Belichick. Moments earlier, while sitting on the bench, Brady was shown on the video board with soaked hair. He pumped his fist in the air 12 times then slapped hands with teammates.