Patriots' second-quarter review: Darrelle Revis shadows Reggie Wayne

Picked-up pieces from second-quarter review of the New England Patriots' 42-20 win over the Indianapolis Colts:

1. The Patriots’ plan to have cornerback Darrelle Revis match up against receiver Reggie Wayne was somewhat similar to what we saw Sept. 14 against Minnesota, when Revis mirrored Greg Jennings for a big part of that game. The similarity is that Revis often found himself working on the inside part of the field, where he explained there is a different feel because of the traffic all around him. At the 8:39 mark Sunday night, Revis matched Wayne on the inside and had blanket coverage to deflect Andrew Luck's pass, which led to safety Devin McCourty intercepting it. Revis later explained the play this way: “Reggie was in the slot and he ran a 10-to-12-yard in-route. I didn’t expect the ball to come because I had pretty good coverage. But Andrew tried to stick it in there, I stuck my hand in there and tipped it up, and Dev was right there. It was kind of a surprise. I was like, ‘Run!’”

2. On Tom Brady’s interception (1:25), it was just a bad football play from a player who usually avoids them -- from the initial check at the line of scrimmage to the actual pass. There was too much to lose in that situation, the risk far outweighing the reward, and when center Bryan Stork and right guard Ryan Wendell appeared to miss their blocking assignment, it hurried everything. A reminder of sorts that even the best still have breakdowns at times. Brady's mental toughness showed up in the second half, as he played very well.

3. It obviously worked out in the end, but at the time, I had no issue with the Patriots kneeling on the ball despite having three timeouts, 51 seconds on the clock, and the ball at their own 14. Since they were getting the opening kickoff of the second half, settling things down seemed like a good choice based on the feel of the game after what had previously transpired.

4. The Colts attempted to chip tight end Rob Gronkowski when possible, but it often didn’t affect Gronkowski. One example was on his 20-yard catch on third-and-3 with 7:13 remaining, as linebacker Bjoern Werner sacrificed his initial rush to jam Gronkowski, but the tight end ran through it with ease before feasting on a matchup against safety Mike Adams.

5. Rookie Dominique Easley, playing right defensive end in the base 4-3 defense, pressed overmatched tight end Coby Fleener into the backfield and then tackled running back Trent Richardson for a 3-yard loss (9:17). That is the spot Chandler Jones would normally be, and that play was a case where Easley’s versatility to play on the edge, like we saw Oct. 5 against Cincinnati, is helping the Patriots. Easley later showed up with a strong interior rush on a stunt (1:16).

6. Danny Amendola fielding a punt at his own 5-yard line, and dropped for a loss of one yard by safety Dewey McDonald, would seem to fall into the category of “decision he’d like to have back.” From this viewpoint, once again, the risk outweighs the reward in that situation (14:49).

7. In this quarter, the Patriots had seven carries for 38 yards and one touchdown when 325-pound offensive tackle Cameron Fleming was in the game as an eligible receiver/sixth offensive lineman. The team also had one pass, Brady’s late second-quarter interception to Gronkowski. So over the first two quarters this was the rushing production when Fleming was in the game: 11 carries for 85 yards and two touchdowns. This isn’t to say it was solely because of Fleming, because it was excellent work across the board for all of the Patriots’ big guys up front (which was noted immediately after the game by Bill Belichick in the locker room). It’s just that Fleming’s heavy usage stood out.

8. Punter Ryan Allen's touchback (11:55) was his fifth of the season. Seven is the league-leading total through Week 11, and that control is something for Allen to continue to work on.

9. One easy-to-overlook downer came on special teams, as Malcolm Butler struggled to hold up McDonald on the play that Amendola fielded a punt at his 5, and Butler later was penalized for an illegal block above the waist on the same punt return that Patrick Chung was flagged for holding. In the first quarter, Tavon Wilson was penalized on a punt return (illegal block above the waist).