The Indianapolis Colts had a firm tight of Saturday"s matchup versus the Patriots for the first three quarters. Over the stretch, they were able come shut the end Bill Belichick"s society while castle proceeded to placed 20 unanswered clues on the board. In the 4th quarter, however, new England began to display sparks that life as they go on a 17-0 operation to bring them in ~ a field goal just before the two-minute warning. But just together the tides showed up to be transforming in donate of the Patriots, Colts running earlier Jonathan Taylor decided to slam the door shut.
On a second-and-8 effort with just over 2 minutes continuing to be in the game, Taylor damaged off a 67-yard touchdown operation that broke the game vast open because that Indianapolis, providing them the 27-17 success in this week 15 matchup the snapped new England"s seven-game winning streak.
It to be an uncharacteristic night because that the Patriots, that were plagued with special teams issues -- consisting of a blocked punting that was reverted for a touchdown -- and also inconsistent pat both offensively and defensively. Indy had the ability to capitalize top top those mistakes and also jump out to that early on lead, which aided cushion the Patriots" late comeback attempt.
Carson Wentz wasn"t asked come do much heavy-lifting in the passing video game as he perfect just 5 of his 12 throws on the night for 57 yards, a touchdown and also an interception. May be his best plays ~ above the night game courtesy ~ above his legs by convert a number of first downs in an essential spots. Taylor finished through 170 yards on the ground, which had that clinching score. Meanwhile, Mac Jones completed 26 the 45 because that 299 yards, 2 touchdowns -- both to Hunter Henry -- and also two picks.
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For much more on exactly how this game unfolded, examine out our takeaways below.
Why the Colts won
Over the first three quarters, Indianapolis greatly was able come take benefit of new England"s mistakes and also were may be to make use of a pair of key matchups. The best was the Patriots" weak in defending the run. The was ~ above full screen on the club"s 2nd offensive possession that the night where they travel 78 yards practically exclusively top top the ground. That culminated in the game"s first touchdown when Wentz perfect a shuffle happen to Nyheim Hines adhering to a straight snap to Taylor. Through the very first half, 122 that Indy"s 160 full yards that offense come via the running game.
As Indy hammered the advantage, that was likewise able to capitalize ~ above general bad play by the Patriots. The Colts to be able come block a punt after brand-new England seemed to allow a Colts defender run with the heat unscathed and put a hand on the football. The was practically immediately recovered by the Colts in the end zone to produce the two-score lead.
Even as the Patriots an installed their comeback effort in the second half, they to be able to make clutch plays in ~ the right moment. The Taylor touchdown run in the 4th quarter is an evident example, yet holding brand-new England come a field goal ~ they obtained the football down to the Indianapolis 2-yard line confirmed to it is in a big swing in the game. Had the Patriots found the finish zone throughout that drive, castle would have actually trailed by simply six and that 2nd score by Hunter Henry later on in the 4th would have provided them the lead.
While Wentz had actually a quiet night v the air, he was very clutch v his legs. All three of Indianapolis" fourth-down conversions were via a Wentz sneak, i beg your pardon either brought about points being put on the plank or simply killed clock in what verified to it is in a tightly disputed game late.
Why the Patriots lost
The Patriots to be the anti-Patriots because that the first three quarters of this game. There to be a variety of uncharacteristic theatre by invoice Belichick"s team, which contributed to the Patriots fallout’s behind early.
To begin the day offensively, they did relocate the sphere well for a moment. Once they gone into Indianapolis territory on the opened possession, however, castle collapsed: Kendrick Bourne was held to a 1-yard sirloin on an end-around, a Shaq Mason penalty negate a 14-yard pass, and Jones was later on sacked because that a 15-yard loss, which required the Patriots right into a fourth-and-30 situation.
On the night, brand-new England cursed eight penalties because that 50 yards and one directly contributed to clues being put on the board. Top top Indy"s first possession of the 2nd half, kicker Michael Badgley initially missed a 46-yard ar goal. However, Patriots one-of-a-kind teamer Brandon King go offsides, which provided Badgley not only an additional shot at the attempt, yet pushed that 5 yards closer. He eventually made the field goal on the 2nd try and extended the Colts" lead to 20.
It to be those type of mistakes the plagued the team transparent the an initial three quarters. Lock were likewise shut out in the an initial half for the very first time since Oct. 2, 2016 versus the bills -- more commonly remembered together the game where Jacoby Brissett started for the Patriots in location of the hurt Jimmy Garoppolo and also suspended Tom Brady.
Coming into Week 15, the Patriots ranked 26th in the league in touchdown percentage in the red zone. That issue did rear its head in this game and also Jones to be picked off at the Colts" 6-yard line v under two minutes come play in the opened half. The Patriots were likewise forced to clear up for a ar goal late in the video game after acquiring the round all the means down to Indy"s 2-yard line.
Of course, avoiding the run was a vast concern coming into this game as the had been among the couple of weak clues of the defense. Those fears were realized transparent the video game as Indy rushed for 226 yards together a team ~ above 5.8 yards per carry.
While Taylor"s touchdown to be the back-breaking moment in the game (and we"ll touch on that below), the sneaky huge moment for the Colts pulling the end this win was stop the Patriots to a ar goal in ~ the 8:57 note of the 4th quarter. Instead of going because that it on fourth-and-goal ~ above the Indianapolis 7-yard line, Belichick elected to kick the field goal to carry his team within 10 points. The was a risky decision together it would then require new England needing two more possessions to one of two people tie the game or take the lead. Had actually Belichick chosen to walk for it and the Patriots found the end zone on that fourth-down try, lock would have actually only needed one possession to gain a touchdown and take the lead.
Play of the game
Taylor"s 67-yard run will most likely place the deeper right into MVP conversations as that operation was specifically the type of dagger the the Colts necessary to traction away through this win. At the time, Indy to be clinging to a three-point lead and also was do the efforts to store the journey alive to kill clock. Instead of simply moving the chains, Taylor expanded the Colts" lead, which effectively eliminated any type of comeback possibilities for the Patriots.
This was Taylor"s 11th straight game with a touchdown, i beg your pardon is the longest-active streak in the NFL since LaDainian Tomlinson"s 12-game streak in 2004. The was also Taylor"s 31st touchdown the his career.
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Hall of Famer Edgerrin James, additionally a Colts star, is the just player in NFL history with an ext touchdowns (35) prior to turning 23 (Taylor turns 23 in January).
From here, the Patriots will certainly head ago to Foxborough and await a pivotal matchup through the Buffalo bills at Gillette Stadium. Meanwhile, the Colts will certainly go on the roadway to confront the Cardinals in Arizona top top Christmas.