FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) -- LeGarrette Blount scored on a 1-yard run after a muffed punt gave New England a short field, and James Develin caught a 1-yard touchdown pass to give the Patriots a 14-0 lead over the Indianapolis Colts through one quarter of the AFC championship game on Sunday night.
The teams traded three-and-outs, but on New England's punt the ball bounced off of return specialist Josh Cribbs' visor and into the hands of Darius Fleming at the 26 yard-line. It took the Patriots six plays to get it into the end zone.
After Adam Vinatieri missed a 51-yard field goal attempt, New England went 59 yards on eight plays, scoring on a pass from Tom Brady to Develin. It was the first pass the Patriots running back had caught in nine games.
The Patriots (13-4) have reached the conference championship game for the fourth straight year and the ninth time under Brady and coach Bill Belichick. They are seeking their sixth trip to the Super Bowl, with a chance for their fourth NFL title.
Indianapolis (13-5) is going for its third Super Bowl berth in nine years, but its first since Andrew Luck replaced Peyton Manning at quarterback. The Colts won the title in 1971 when they were in Baltimore, and again in 2006 after moving to Indianapolis.
The Patriots beat the Colts 42-20 in November, led by Jonas Gray, who ran for 201 yards and four touchdowns. But Blount joined the team the next week, having worn out his welcome in Pittsburgh, and has taken over as the No. 1 running back since.
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