The Patriots have been so consistently good, so cool, so together over the years, you wonder if anything can ruffle them.
Sunday, they played like a team that got really tired of hearing about the new guy and how good he was.
The Patriots throttled the Colts 59-24, making Andrew Luck look like a rookie with lots to learn. That tied a franchise record for points in a game for the Patriots, and generally made it look easy for the last 25 minutes of the game.
They picked Luck off three times and returned two of them for touchdowns, and returned a punt for a score.
Coupled with a dominant performance by tight end Rob Gronkowski, it was a thorough domination. Gronkowski (seven catches, 137 yards, two touchdowns) became the first tight end in league history with three consecutive seasons with 10 touchdowns.
Luck had moments when he looked like the cool player who led the Colts to a 6-3 start. But what became obvious over the course of the game was how talent-deficient the Colts overall roster is, relative to the Patriots. The Colts struggled to protect him, making it hard for him to shine. And they absolutely lack the horses on defense to play with good teams.
The Patriots, on the other hand, seemed to enjoy laying it on. Tom Brady was 24-of-35 for 331 yards and three touchdowns, leading a turnover-free game for his team, which improved to 7-3.
That’s right, they had the same record as the Colts walking in the door. It was the only thing they had in common.