Tom Brady may look out for revived receiver Phillip Dorsett
Colts have had three defeats in four games
Sky Sports Action & Main Event
1.20am Thursday night
Indianapolis visiting New England does not have the allure it had when Peyton Manning and Tom Brady were in their pomp.
Brady is still playing to a high standard at 41, but Indianapolis may have already seen the best days of Manning's successor, Andrew Luck, who has not lived up to his name as regards injuries.
Reports of New England's demise appear to have been exaggerated as they responded to such whispers after they fell to a 1-2 start by mauling previously unbeaten Miami 38-7. There looked to be no fluke about the result.
The Colts are struggling with three defeats in four games, and their 21-9 win in Washington was more of a surprise than the losses.
The latest defeat came after rookie coach Frank Reich went for it on fourth and four in their own half but failed, setting up the Texans for a field goal that brought their first win of the season.
Handicaps in double figures are no real surprise and the Colts are in a bad way with injuries - ten players were unable to practice this week and others are nursing knocks. Coaches tends to err on the side of caution when it comes to rushing players back for Thursday night games, so the visitors could be short-handed.
The Patriots could have the most significant injury absentee if Rob Gronkowski, who went off in the third quarter against Miami, is not risked, and while Julian Edelman is back after injury and suspension he is likely to see limited action.
Brady, who has a 10-2 record on Thursdays, has to throw to someone, however, and with recent recruit Josh Gordon still earning his trust and not fully fit, the veteran QB could look more often to another revived receiver, Phillip Dorsett.
Dorsett was drafted by the Colts in the first round in 2015 but never made the grade. However, he has already scored touchdowns against Houston and Miami this season and looks worth an interest to add to his tally.
P Dorsett to score a touchdown
1pt 3-1 Sky Bet
Venue Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, Massachusetts
Weather Cloudy, 16C
Vegas handicap Indianapolis +10
Vegas points line 51.5
Ten Colts were unable to practice on Tuesday including tight end Jack Doyle (hip), wide receiver TY Hilton (hamstring) and safety Clayton Geathers (knee). Running back Marlon Mack (foot) is another doubt.
Cornerback Eric Rowe (groin) and offensive tackle LaAdrian Waddle (illness) could miss the game. A late decision may also be taken on tight end Rob Gronkowski (ankle). Wide receiver Julian Edelman can return after a four-game suspension.
Seven of the last eight games between the teams have gone over the points line.
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