- WHEN: Sunday, Nov. 24, 8:30 p.m. MST.
- WHERE: Gillette Stadium; Foxborough, Mass.
- TV: NBC.
- SERIES RECORD: Broncos lead, 25-18 (Broncos lead 2-1 in the postseason).
- JOHN FOX'S RECORD: 1-3 (0-2 in the postseason).
- PEYTON MANNING'S RECORD: 6-11 (1-2 in the postseason).
- SERIES STREAK: Including playoffs, the Patriots have won three straight and four of the last five.
- LAST TIME: Patriots 31, Broncos 21; Oct. 7, 2012. New England cranked up its tempo and ran through and around the Broncos. The Patriots racked up a club-record 35 first downs -- also the most ever allowed by the Broncos -- and 251 rushing yards, dropping Denver to 1-21 all-time when surrendering more than 250 yards on the ground. New England's running backs corps of Stevan Ridley, Brandon Bolden, Danny Woodhead and Shane Vereen combined for 253 yards on 50 carries and was particularly effective on third downs, averaging 9.6 yards per third-down rush, which helped the Patriots score 24 consecutive points to turn a second-quarter deadlock into a 31-7 third-quarter lead that was too much to overcome. The Broncos wouldn't lose again for three months.
- LAST TIME IN FOXBOROUGH: Same.
NOTING THE GAME:
- Wide receiver
Wes Welker's return is likely to snatch the headlines -- unless recent Patriots pickup Tim Tebow has become an integral part of their offense by then. (And given national media's Tebow fetish, it's likely he'll be a primary conversation topic if he's still on the New England roster.) But in the wake of Aaron Hernandez's arrest on a murder charge and subsequent release, another connection could be just as important: tight end Daniel Fells, a Broncos starter in 2011 who is one of the candidates to see additional playing time with Hernandez out of the picture and Rob Gronkowski recovering from back surgery.
- New England's current three-game winning streak against the Broncos is their longest in the series since a three-game run from Oct. 18, 1963 to Nov. 20, 1964.
- The Patriots might as well be a division rival, given how often these teams have dueled recently. Including playoffs, this will be the 18th game between the clubs since 1995. The only years they’ve missed since 1995 were 2004, 2007 and 2010.
- The Broncos are 6-6 against Belichick since he became the Patriots' head coach in 2000, a record that includes the Broncos' divisional-round win on Jan. 14, 2006. Denver is 10-6 overall against Belichick, including a 4-0 mark against his Browns teams from 1991-95.
- Including playoffs, Manning is 5-3 against the Patriots since the 2005 season. He began his career losing 10 of his first 12 to them.
- Brady has a losing record against just one team: the Broncos. He is 3-5 as a starter against them (4-6 including the playoffs). He is .500 against four teams (Arizona, Seattle, San Francisco and the New York Giants, if playoffs are included) and a winning mark against everybody else.
- This is the 12th consecutive game between the clubs to take place in either a late-afternoon (2:05, 2:15 or 2:25 p.m. MT) or prime-time slot. They haven't played an early-afternoon game since Oct. 24, 1999.
- Just one of the last seven games (including postseason) between the teams has been decided by less than 10 points (a 20-17 Broncos overtime win on Oct. 11, 2009). The average margin between the teams in that span is 16.2 points.
- Since the Patriots dropped "Boston" and became "New England" in 1971, the Broncos have never finished below .500 in a season when they won at Foxborough. They've never won a playoff game in a year when they lost a regular-season game at Foxborough.