FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Tom Brady threw three touchdown passes as the New England Patriots cruised to a dominant 45-7 win over the Indianapolis Colts Sunday in the second most lopsided AFC championship game in history.
The Patriots quarterback also set an NFL record with his sixth career Super Bowl appearance, one more than Broncos legend John Elway.
New England took a 7-0 lead 4:45 in the first quarter and never looked back. LeGarrette Blount punched in a one-yard score for the first of three rushing touchdowns on the day. Blount ran for 148 yards on 30 carries.
Brady’s first touchdown put the Patriots up 14-0 late in the first. Then, with just under five minutes left in the half, the Colts scored their only points of the game on a one-yard rush from Zurlon Tipton.
The Patriots responded by scoring 31 unanswered points to close the game.
With the win, New England qualified for their eighth Super Bowl appearance in franchise history, matching Pittsburgh and Dallas for the NFL record.
On Feb. 1 they will take on the Seattle Seahawks, who rallied from a 16-point deficit to beat the Green Bay Packers in overtime in the NFC championship game.