Brady vs. Manning: Through the Years
September 30, 2001 - Patriots 44, Colts 13
FOXBORO – In the first start of Brady’s NFL career one week after Mo Lewis changed NFL history with a hit on a decelerating Drew Bledsoe, the Pats pummelled Jim Mora’s Colts. Bryan Cox lit up Jerome Pathon over the middle, Manning threw pick-6s to Ty Law and Otis Smith, and Brady went 13 for 23 for 168 yards while going three-and-out just once. Manning was 20 for 34 with a touchdown and three picks.
October 21, 2001 - Patriots 38, Colts 17
INDIANAPOLIS – David Patten scored on a 29-yard reverse, a 91-yard bomb from Brady and threw a 60-yard touchdown to Troy Brown in the first half of a beatdown in the RCA Dome. Happy day for Charlie Weis. Brady went 16 of 20 for 202 yards and three touchdowns. Manning was 22 for 34 for 355 with a touchdown and took four sacks.
November 30, 2003 - Patriots 38, Colts 34
INDIANAPOLIS – With the Colts in their second season in the newly-formed AFC South, the twice-a-year meetings between the teams had ended. The Patriots ability to weather the slowly-maturing Manning had not. This was the first instance of the two quarterbacks getting into a battle of runs where a big lead was opened and – after adjustments were made – that lead was erased. The Patriots got up 17-0 early in the second on a touchdown pass to Dedric Ward. Indy narrowed to 17-10, then Bethel Johnson took a kickoff 92 yard before the break to make it 24-10. The Patriots got it to 31-10 before Manning started putting points up thanks to a pair of rapid-fire Brady picks in the third. Indy tied it at 31 and Tony Dungy thought it was a good idea to kick it off to Bethel Johnson again. He returned it 67 yards to set up a Deion Branch touchdown that made it 38-31. Kevin Faulk fumbled at the Patriots 12 with 4:36 left but the Patriots held Indy to a field goal. The Patriots went three-and-out and Ken Walter launched an 18-yard punt (Bill Belichick’s father Steve would later opine the team needed to get a new punter) and Indy was on the march for the game-winning score. But Indy couldn’t get in on three plays from the 2, failing on fourth-and-goal from the 1 when Willie McGinest flashed off the edge to take down the Edge (Edgerrin James). Colts fans and competition committee czar Bill Polian wheedled about McGinest faking an injury earlier in the Colts drive, forcing an injury timeout that they said stopped Indy’s momentum. Brady finished 26 for 36 for 255 with two touchdowns and two picks (both costly). Manning was 29 for 48 for 278 with four touchdowns and a pick. Manning was better than Brady in this one.
January 18, 2004 - Patriots 24, Colts 14
The 2003 AFC Championship. Manning had more touchdowns (5) than incompletions (4) in a Wild Card win over the Broncos. He cooled down against Kansas City with three touchdowns and no picks. He. Could not. Be Stopped. This was the birth of Peyton Hatred in New England. Trailing 7-0, Manning ended Indy’s first drive throwing a pick in the end zone to Rodney Harrison. When the Colts got the ball back trailing 10-0, Manning wasted no time and threw a pick to Ty Law on the first play from scrimmage. Trailing 13-0, the ball was snapped over the head of punter Hunter Smith to end the next Colts drive. Marvin Harrison fumbled at the Patriots 22 to end the Colts final drive of the first half. The Colts did make it 21-14 late in the game because Brady did not have a great second half, and got the ball at their 20 with two minutes left trailing by 7. But they went three-and-out with the Patriots clubbing the hell out of Marcus Pollard on the fourth-down incompletion and Bill Polian flipping out in the press box about the uncalled holds. The fist-pounding would turn into gavel-pounding a couple of months later and the “rules emphasis” freeing up the Indy receivers would be enacted. Brady finished 22 for 37 for 237 with a touchdown and a pick. Manning was 23 for 47 for 237 with a touchdown and four picks. The two early picks were the real nutcrushers.
September 9, 2004 - Patriots 27, Colts 24
FOXBORO - Thursday night. Season opener. Ozzy Osbourne in stadium to sing Crazy Train before the kickoff. Another banner unfurled. Vince Wilfork’s first regular-season game. Patriots get a game-opening field goal. Manning follows with a pick thrown to Tedy Bruschi on the goal line. Inconceivable. And people wonder why New England is slow to embrace the wonder of Peyton. The Colts say screw it to the passing game and run the hell out of it with Edgerrin James and Dominic Rhodes. It was 17-13, Colts at the end of a really good half. Brady threw 20 times in the first half; Manning 12. Edgerrin James fumbled in the third at the Patriots 22. The Patriots turned it into a touchdown and were up 27-17. Manning got Indy back within a field goal early in the fourth with a TD to Stokley. Then Brady got picked in Colts territory and Deion Branch fumbled a punt. With 3:58 left, Asante Samuel got called for PI in the end zone and Indy was all set. Until Edge fumbled at the 1. Wilfork recovered. The Patriots got it out of their end but the Colts had one last chance and Mike Vanderjagt, who’d made an NFL record 42 straight field goals (regular season) missed. He made the money sign at the Patriots bench before the miss. Manning finished 16 for 29 for 256 with two TDs and a pick. Brady was 26 for 38 for 335, 3 TDs and a pick. That goal line pick by Manning was a killer overshadowed by the James fumbles later on.
January 16, 2005 - Patriots 20, Colts 3
FOXBORO – The AFC Divisional Playoff followed the same script as the AFC Championship the year before leading in. Manning threw for 458 against the Chiefs in the Wild Card. The self-immolation in the opener signaled the Colts were gaining ground. And then the game started and Indy couldn’t move. But neither could the Patriots. New England got a couple field goals. Tedy Bruschi stole the ball from Dominic Rhodes. Indy got a field goal before the half. The Patriots ripped off 15-play and 14-play touchdown drives as Brady and Corey Dillon took over and the Colts were choked out. End of story. No goat horns. Brady was 18 for 27 for 144 (Dillon ran for 144); Manning was 27 for 42 for 238. His pick came as time expired.
November 7, 2005 - Colts 40, Patriots 21
FOXBORO – On this Monday night, the Colts were a machine. Brady was 22 for 35 for 263 with three touchdowns; Manning was 28 for 37 for 321 with three touchdowns and a pick but the numbers that mattered were on third down where the Colts went 12 for 17 and the Patriots went 4 for 11. The Colts got touchdowns on four of their first five possessions and scored every time they had it but twice – a pick and a game-closing punt. It was 21-7 at the half even though Brady was 10 for 10. The Colts made it 28-7 after their first possession. By the end, Doug Flutie was taking the snaps.
November 6, 2006 - Colts 27, Patriots 20
FOXBORO – This was the season the Patriots traded Deion Branch before the opener and took the field with Troy Brown, Doug Gabriel, Reche Caldwell and Chad Jackson as their key wideouts with rookie Laurence Maroney splitting carries with Corey Dillon. Criminal. Brady got picked on the opening drive throwing to Gabriel. He got picked before the half throwing deep to Ben Watson. Both came in Indy territory. The Pats were gambling early, going for it on fourth-and-3 from the Indy 15 in the first quarter because they were leery of the Colts running away with it. Rookie Stephen Gostkowski pushed a field goal in the third in his first game kicking in the same stadium with his Patriots predecessor Adam Vinatieri. Brady threw two picks in the fourth and four overall in his worst game in all the Brady-Manning matchups. Manning was 20 for 36 for 326 with two touchdowns and a pick. Brady was 20 for 35 with no TDs and the four picks.
January 21, 2007 - Colts 38, Patriots 34
INDIANAPOLIS – The AFC Championship Game monkey removal event for Peyton Manning. Certainly the games stretching back to the 2004 opener had signaled Manning was starting to conquer his mental block against the Patriots. And facing the Pats in the climate-controlled, noise-controlled (allegedly) RCA Dome after the Patriots had a grueling win over the Chargers on the West Coast in the Wild Card round was a welcome boon for the Colts. But with all that good fortune favoring Indy, the Patriots came out windmilling like a kid that just got knocked down and noticed he’s bleeding. The Patriots got up 21-3 in the first half, the final seven coming on a pick-6 thrown by Manning to Asante Samuel. The Patriots had a chance to make it worse before the break but an offensive pass interference on Troy Brown wiped out a first down and stalled the Patriots, the Colts got the ball back and made it 21-6. Then Manning went to work in the second half. A 14-play scoring drive, a Patriots three-and-out, and a touchdown drive aided by a bogus end-zone PI called on Ellis Hobbs tied the game at 21. The teams traded haymakers and the Patriots had a 34-31 lead with the ball and 3:30 left when Brown and Brady failed to hook up on a little option route on a third-and-4. That woulda, coulda, shoulda ended it. It didn’t. Manning got the ball back, the Colts scored and Brady threw a pick. Manning backers point to this one win as if it sandblasts away all his other choke jobs. It doesn’t. But it was a watershed moment. Brady went 21 for 34 for 232 with a TD and a pick. Manning was 27 for 47 for 349 with a TD and a pick.
November 4, 2007 - Patriots 24, Colts 20
INDIANAPOLIS – The Patriots were a much better team than the Colts now having added Randy Moss and Wes Welker, even if the Colts were defending Super Bowl champs. Still, Indy got the edge by halftime on a weaving catch-and-run by Joseph Addai that made it 13-6. The Colts got the lead to 20-10 in the fourth but a pair of touchdowns – one to Welker from 3 yards away and another to Kevin Faulk put the Patriots up. Manning took a pile of pivotal third-down sacks, the last a strip sack by Rosey Colvin that sealed the win and kept the Patriots unbeaten season intact. The Colts fell to 7-1.
November 15, 2009 - Colts 35, Patriots 34
INDIANAPOLIS – Fourth-and-two. Manning now at the height of his powers and to be taken very seriously. The 8-0 Colts hosting the 6-2 Patriots in the Colts new stadium and New England got up 17 points with 24 unanswered points after Indy claimed a 7-0 lead. The Colts got a TD back but the Patriots stretched it to 31-14 early in the fourth. But the Colts kept coming and touchdowns were an inevitability every time Indy got possession. Manning did throw a pick to Eugene Wilson halfway through the fourth that gave the Patriots a field goal but the Colts plowed downfield to score and make it 34-28 with 2:27 left. Indy kicked it deep and played defense and executed perfectly to bring up that fourth-and-2 with 2:08 remaining. The throw in the flat to Faulk didn’t work by inches. It was an unconventional call but given the Colts’ had cruised for touchdowns on three of their previous four possessions, the handwriting was on the wall. With 13 seconds left in the game, Manning found Wayne for the one-yard touchdown and win. More than anything else, this game showed Belichick’s respect for Manning as a volume scorer. Brady went 29 for 42 for 375 and three touchdowns with one pick. Manning was 28 for for 44 for 327 with four TDs and two picks.
November 21, 2010 - Patriots 31, Colts 28
FOXBORO – One of the lost classics. Very, very fun game that the Patriots seemingly had in hand, holding a 14-point lead most of the way that they extended to 17 points in the fourth, 31-14. Then Manning kicked it in. The Patriots couldn’t get a closeout drive in the fourth quarter and Manning led the Colts to a pair of touchdown drives. With a chance to tie the game, the Colts had first-and-10 from the Patriots 24 with 37 seconds left. Manning tried to hit Pierre Garcon down the right sideline but Jermaine Cunningham (!) harassed the throw and James Sanders came up with the game-sealing pick. Manning also got picked opening the game so it was a bit of a throwback game for Peyton. Manning finished 38 for 52 for 396 with four TDs and three picks. Brady had a throwback game too: 19 for 25 for 186 two TDs and no picks.
October 7, 2012 - Patriots 31, Broncos 21
FOXBORO – The Patriots obliterated Denver twice in 2011 with Tim Tebow at quarterback by scores of 41-23 and 45-10. Manning and his surgically-repaired neck weren’t going to fix things that quickly. The Patriots got up 31-7 by early in the fourth. A fumble by Demaryius Thomas on a long reception thwarted their first drive. The Patriots got a touchdown throw to Wes Welker and the Broncos answered it then Brady went off in shotgun against Jack Del Rio’s defense up-tempoing the hell out of Denver to get up 24-7. A strip-sack of Manning was turned into a Stevan Ridley touchdown with 4:51 left in the third to get the 24-point edge. The Broncos answered. Then a Brady strip-sack was turned into a touchdown and a Stevan Ridley fumble recovered at the Patriots 37 with 6:43 left had the Broncos driving to close within a field goal. Willis McGahee fumbled at the Pats 14 with 3:53 left and the thing was closed out. Another game of runs, though. Setting the stage for the ultimate game of runs in 2013.
November 24, 2013 - Patriots 34, Broncos 31 (OT)
FOXBORO – The cold and the wind showed up for the start of this one. The Patriots didn’t. Friggin’ Ridley. Fumbled at the Denver 40 on the game’s eighth play and Von Miller took it back 60 yards. Miller then strip-sacked Brady on the second play of the next drive and Knowshon Moreno took it in for a score. Then LeGarrette Blount fumbled on the third play of the next drive and the Broncos added a field goal. The Broncos got another one midway through the second to make it 24-0 heading into halftime. The Patriots then went off. They scored three touchdowns in the third, one off a Montee Ball fumble. In the fourth, Manning got picked by Logan Ryan on the second play of the quarter and the Patriots turned that into a touchdown to make it 28-24, New England. A time-consuming drive made it 31-24 with 7:50 left in the game. Manning (aided by a defensive holding call that wiped out an Aqib Talib pick) went on a brilliant 80-yard drive to tie the game at 31. Neither team could get anything going in the final three minutes exchanging punts and heading for overtime. Then Belichick, after winning the toss, bet against Manning’s arm. The Patriots took the wind and a stalemate ensued. Denver and the Patriots exchanged a pair of punts. But the second of the Pats’ two punts – launched with 3:11 remaining in overtime – was blundered by Wes Welker. Playing his first game against the team that made him famous, Welker was indecisive on a knuckling punt and backed off a shoulda-been fair catch. It bounced into blocker Tony Carter at the Denver 13 and the Patriots kicked the field goal. Welker was the goat. “We’ll take the wind…” became a thing for a day or two until the next shiny thing came along. Brady went 34 for 50 for 344 yards and three touchdowns with no picks. Manning was outplayed. He went 19 for 36 for 150 with two touchdowns and a pick. The Patriots couldn’t stop Knowshon Moreno, though, as he ran for 224 yards and the Broncos ran for 280 on the night.
January 19, 2014 - Broncos 26, Patriots 16
DENVER – The AFC Championship rolled through the Rockies and the Patriots rolled in diminished. No Rob Gronkowski. Aaron Dobson on a broken foot. The sad state of offensive affairs was demonstrated on the first two drives when the team was throwing to special teams ace Matt Slater, journeyman Austin Collie and unknown Matt Mulligan in key spots. The running game that saved them from their punchless receiver situation (brought about by Aaron Hernandez’ arrest and Gronk’s season-ender) was ruined by Pot Roast Knighton and a sluggish performance on the offensive line. The Patriots got out of the first quarter trailing 3-0 but Aqib Talib got blown up by a Wes Welker pick and the Patriots were without their best corner. Key offensive plays for the Patriots on third and fourth downs in Denver territory were blown up by the Broncos front (with lapses from Nate Solder and Logan Mankins) and Denver got up 23-3. It was an utter manhandling. Brady went 24 for 38 for 277 with a touchdown pass. Manning was 32 for 43 for 400 even and two touchdown passes. The ball came out so fast the rush never had a shot. The cushion given receivers like Julius and Demaryius Thomas made it pitch-and-catch. A layup for Denver.