Patriots to play Seahawks in Super Bowl after routing Colts, 45-7

Written By kolimtiga on Senin, 19 Januari 2015 | 12.56

New England quarterback Tom Brady and Coach Bill Belichick are heading to their sixth Super Bowl game after the Patriots dismantled the Indianapolis Colts, 45-7, in the AFC championship game on Sunday.

Amazingly, after Week 4 this season the idea was introduced the Patriots had a budding quarterback controversy and the franchise's long run of success might be ending.

The Patriots had been thumped by the Miami Dolphins and Kansas City Chiefs and, at least on the outside, people were seeking answers. Brady wasn't playing well and some even wondered if rookie Jimmy Garoppolo's time was coming before anyone expected for the second-round pick from Eastern Illinois.

The final week of September was a long time ago and now Brady will become the first quarterback to start six Super Bowls.

New England blasted the Colts as LeGarrette Blount rushed for 148 yards and three touchdowns and Brady passed for three scores at Gillette Stadium. The Patriots will play against the Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX on Feb. 1 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz. Seattle opened as a 2 1/2-point favorite.

Brady and Belichick have now combined for six AFC titles but they haven't won a Super Bowl in a decade. Since defeating the Eagles in Super Bowl XXXIX, New England has lost twice to the Giants in the Super Bowl. Now, the question is whether or not Brady, whose 20 playoff victories are the most in NFL history, can join Joe Montana and Terry Bradshaw as the only quarterbacks with four Super Bowl rings.

"It's hard to compare year to year," Brady said. "This team is going to have to win a very big game to leave our legacy."

What about the talk that he was headed downhill rapidly after the team's 2-2 start?

"I talked about that before," Brady said. "There is a lot of motivation for a lot of different reasons. It's important not to ride the roller coaster."

Brady won the first 10 playoff starts of his career but has come up short since and at 37 it's fair to wonder if this will be his final shot for another ring. His poor play at the start of the season was turned around quickly and he's not showing signs of decline like 38-year-old Peyton Manning, who was bounced out of the playoffs the week before by the Colts.

The Patriots went with a heavy dose of extra linemen in running the ball right at the Colts, similar to the formula used in a 42-20 victory at Indianapolis in Week 11. Belichick played with eligible linemen like he did a week ago against the Ravens and Brady had a 16-yard touchdown pass to left tackle Nate Solder. Blount carried the ball 30 times, a playoff record for the Patriots.

"He made some great cuts in not good conditions," Belichick said. "There were sereval times he took nothing and turned it into something."

While Brady, who completed 23 of 35 passes for 226 yards, was on his game using Julian Edelman over the middle, Colts quarterback Andrew Luck struggled. He completed only 12 of 33 passes for 126 yards and had two passes intercepted. He is now 0-4 vs. the Patriots in his three-year career.

It was a disturbing week for the Colts. Linebacker Josh McNary was arrested and charged with rape. Running back Trent Richardson missed a walk-through before the team departed Indianapolis and he was left behind. Richardson said after the fact it was for personal reasons. Then, reserve offensive tackle Xavier Nixon missed the charter flight.

None of those distractions had anything to do with a game that was such a blowout. The Colts couldn't stop Blount and were unable to pressure Brady.

The storylines for Super Bowl XLIX are terrific. The Seahawks are attempting to become the first team to repeat as champions since the Patriots did in 2003 and 2004. New England, meanwhile, is attempting to reclaim glory with Brady.

Twitter @BradBiggs

Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times

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