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NFL Week 5 - New England Patriots at Denver Broncos Game Notes

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The Denver Broncos (4-0) and Boston Patriots (3-1), who played each other in the first regular-season game in American Football League history 50 years ago, take to the field on Sunday at INVESCO Field at Mile High. Kickoff is set for 2:15 p.m. MDT.

QUICKLY:
  • The Broncos, who are 4-0 for the first time in six seasons, will wear the uniform designs worn by the club in its 1960 inaugural season (brown helmet, mustard-colored jersey, brown pants and vertically striped socks).
  • Head Coach Josh McDaniels was part of three Super Bowl wins as an assistant with the Patriots from 2001-08. During his three years as offensive coordinator (2006-08), the Patriots scored an NFL-best 1,384 points.
  • The Broncos own the NFL's top record against the Patriots since 2001 with a 5-2 mark and are a league-best 16-4 (.800) versus the club in the Pat Bowlen era (since 1984).

OFFENSE:

  • QB Kyle Orton is 17-2 (.895) at home as a starter for his NFL career for the best winning percentage by a QB since the 1970 merger (min. 15 starts). He is the only starting QB in the NFL to not throw an interception this year and owns five touchdown passes along with a 97.7 passer rating.
  • WR Brandon Marshall gained 33 yards after the catch on his 51-yard game-winning touchdown reception last week against Dallas. Since 2007, he ranks second among NFL WRs in yards after the catch (1,068).

DEFENSE:

  • Coached by long-time NFL defensive coordinator Mike Nolan, the Broncos have tied for the fifth-fewest points allowed (26) by an NFL team through its first four games of a season since the 1970 merger.
  • Denver leads the league in several other defensive categories, including yards per play (4.0), touchdowns allowed (2) and fewest 10-yard plays (33).
  • OLB/DE Elvis Dumervil, who is tied for first in the NFL with eight sacks, has recorded multiple sacks in each of Denver's last three games.

SPECIAL TEAMS:

  • The Broncos lead the AFC and rank second in the NFL in average opponent drive start after kickoffs (21.0-yard line).
  • K Matt Prater was named AFC Special Teams Player of the Month for September, becoming the first Denver kicker to win the award since 2001.