New England Patriots [14-4] at Indianapolis Colts [14-4]

Article excerpt

Byline: David Elfin, THE WASHINGTON TIMES

When: Today, 6:30 p.m.

Where: RCA Dome, Indianapolis

TV: Chs. 9, 13

Line: Colts by 3.

Last meeting: Tom Brady threw four interceptions and the Colts won 27-20 at Gilette Stadium in early November.

Key injuries: New England S Rodney Harrison (knee) is out. WR Troy Brown (flu), T Ryan O'Callaghan (flu) and DE Mike Wright (flu) are questionable. QB Tom Brady (shoulder) is probable. Indianapolis T Ryan Diem (shoulder), CB Nick Harper (ankle), LB Cato June (concussion), G Ryan Lilja (knee), WR Ricky Proehl (hamstring) and FS Bob Sanders (knee) are questionable.

WHEN THE COLTS HAVE THE BALL

Indianapolis has long been one of the NFL's elite offenses and there was little dropoff with rookie running back Joseph Addai replacing Edgerrin James. But as terrific as quarterback Peyton Manning and wide receiver Marvin Harrison are, they have not played well in the playoffs this month or in the past against the Patriots. Playing at home should be a boon for the Colts, who have gone 24-3 in the RCA Dome the last three years. New England has allowed the second-fewest points in the league thanks to defensive ends Richard Seymour and Ty Warren, heady linebackers Tedy Bruschi and Mike Vrabel and a secondary that has played well despite injuries to safeties Rodney Harrison and Eugene Wilson.

EDGE: COLTS

WHEN THE PATRIOTS HAVE THE BALL

Unlike the Colts, who are looking to join the 1999 and 2001 Rams as the only Super Bowl teams with a 4,000-yard quarterback, two 1,000-yard receivers and a 1,000-yard running back, the Patriots don't have a lot of big names beyond Tom Brady the ultimate big-game quarterback. …