Patriots vs. Broncos: Will New England’s Dominant Running Attack Prevail?

David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

The New England Patriots have found a new way to beat teams: On the ground. LeGarrette Blount looked like the second coming of Jim Brown on Sunday as he gashed his way for 166 yards and a whopping four touchdown runs.

Blount simply controlled the game as did the Patriots with their ability to dominate time of possession with the running game. It is amazing what Bill Belichick has done. Without his full complement of tight ends he has completely transformed this offense on the fly to a run-first attack.

Boy does it look to be working. The Denver Broncos may be running into a buzz-saw on Sunday afternoon. Belichick and Tom Brady are simply the best when it comes to this time of year. I don’t think anyone could argue that the Pats play with a certain swagger and confidence on the field during the playoffs. That looseness allows them to go out and ball.

Despite all his greatness the jury is still out on Peyton Manning. He is below .500 in the playoffs with a 10-11 record and has had some games he’d like to forget in January. This is going to be another classic as Brady and Manning meet for the 15th time. It may very well be the last as Manning will get his neck evaluated this offseason to determine if he can keep playing.

Manning knows it is potentially his final ride into the sunset, and he knows what one more ring would do for his legacy. Cherish this one, folks. These are two of the best to ever do it facing off possibly for the last time. You won’t want to miss this. In the end, though, I think Manning wants it too much for the Broncos not to go all the way.

Final score? Broncos 34-Patriots 31

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