The Denver Broncos received the ball first to start the second half and they had any hope for winning this game it would have to come from this opening drive.
On third and ten, Brock Osweiler was hit as he threw and Demaryius Thomas caught the fluttering pass for a first down. C.J. Anderson took the first down handoff for six yards, then Jamaal Charles bounced it outside for three. On third and one, Andy Janovich got involved and pounded the ball inside for three yards and first down.
After an incompletion, Charles burst through the middle for a ten yard gain and a first down at the Patriots 35-yard line.
Charles took the next two handoffs for five total yards. On third and five, Osweiler hit Sanders again down to the Patriots eight-yard line for a first and goal. A touchdown run from C.J. Anderson was wiped out by a Garett Bolles holding penalty.
On first and goal from the 18, Osweiler handed off to Charles who would get 11-yards to setup a better second down and goal opportunity at the Patriots seven-yard line. Osweiler hit Demaryius Thomas on a slant on the next play for a touchdown pass.
Patriots 27, Broncos 16.
The defense came out fired up on the opening second half drive from Tom Brady and the New England Patriots. A one-yard loss on a first down run looked good. However, Rob Gronkowski got loose for a 26-yard gain on the next play to get the Patriots out to midfield.
Brandin Cooks got free from Aqib Talib for another 25-yard gain and the Patriots answered the long Broncos drive with a quick scoring drive of their own as the Patriots march straight down the field for the touchdown.
Patriots 34, Broncos 16.
Somehow, defensive coordinator Joe Woods only put ten defenders on the field on the final play of the Patriots touchdown drive.
The Broncos would keep things on the ground to start their next drive with Jamaal Charles gaining ten yards on two carries, then Osweiler hit Code Latimer for 12-yards.
Two incompletions later, on third and ten, Osweiler hit Jeff Heuerman well short of the first down marker. The Broncos opted not to go for it and punted away.
From their own six yard line, the Patriots began to run the ball down the Broncos throat. The third quarter ended much like the rest of the quarters - with the Patriots in complete control of the game.