Berkshire Eagle Staff
FOXBOROUGH -- LeGarrette Blount scored a franchise playoff record four touchdowns and the Patriot defense picked off Andrew Luck four times as New England advanced to the AFC championship game with a 43-22 thrashing of Indianapolis.
The Patriots had a pair of touchdowns before the Colts managed a first down.
On the third play from scrimmage, New England cornerback Alfonso Dennard intercepted Luck's second pass of the game and ran the ball down to the Indianapolis 2-yard line.
On the next play, Blount punched the ball in.
The Patriot defense held the Colts to a three-and-out. New England's next drive was a little longer, as Tom Brady marched New England down the field on a 10-play, 74-yard drive.
Brady was 4 for 4 for 57 yards. Once again, Blount powered over from the 2, and New England was up 14-0.
Luck rallied the Colts in the next series, finally moving the ball. Indianapolis went 80 yards, and Luck capped the drive with a 38-yard pass to LaVon Brazill.
As the second quarter opened, the Patriots grounded out a 14-play drive that lasted almost seven minutes. It ended with Blount flipping into the end zone for his third touchdown of the game. New England rushed the ball 10 times on the one drive for a 21-7 lead.
Adam Vinatieri's 34-yard field goal cut the margin to 21-10.
On the next series, Indianapolis picked up two more points when the ball was snapped over the head Patriot punter Ryan Allen . After a scramble, the ball was knocked out of the end zone. The halftime score was 21-12.
A 21-yard Vinatieri field goal sliced the lead to 21-15 on Indianapolis' first possession of the second half.
But the Patriots were poised to balloon their lead, scoring 22 second-half points.
It was Blount's fourth TD that pushed New England's lead to 14 points early in the fourth quarter before Stevan Ridley capped the scoring.