The New England Patriots will be underdogs entering Saturday night's pivotal Week 15 game against the Indianapolis Colts on the road.
The Colts are favored by 2.5 points, which is a little surprising given how well the Patriots have played over the last two months, plus the fact that New England is well-rested coming off a Week 14 bye.
The Patriots have won a league-best seven games in a row to lead the AFC East division and occupy the No. 1 seed in the conference. They're also 6-0 on the road and haven't lost to the Colts since the infamous 4th-and-2 game in 2009.
Former Patriots linebacker Rob Ninkovich is expecting that win streak to continue this weekend. He sees the Patriots bullying the Colts with their toughness and effective rushing attack.
"The Patriots are gonna kill the Colts," Ninkovich said Wednesday on WEEI's "The Greg Hill Show". "I sound like an old guy, again, but there's not much toughness in the league anymore. You've got guys trying to get flags on every play, 'Oh, he hit me in the head.' I watched Josh Allen with the Bills, every play he gets hit he's looking at the ref. Just play football and stop trying to get flags from the ref. The Patriots are going to roll them because they're built like an old school, tough team that wants to run the football down your throat. The rest of the league, right now, they're finesse. It's a finesse league."
The Patriots are averaging 123.4 rushing yards per game (4.2 per carry), along with 15 total touchdowns on the ground. One of their best performances came in Week 13 when they ran for 222 yards (4.8 per carry) and a touchdown in a 14-10 win over the Buffalo Bills on the road. Starting running back Damien Harris tallied 111 yards and a touchdown as New England consistently ran all over the Buffalo defense.
The Colts allow 4.5 yards per carry, so it wouldn't be surprising if the Patriots again rely on a run-based offense Saturday night.