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5 Things You Need to Know About Sunday's Patriots Game vs. Denver

The New England Patriots host the Denver Broncos Sunday as the team's rivalry with quarterback Peyton Manning is renewed. Kick-off is 4:25 p.m. at Gillette Stadium.

A familiar rival returns to Foxborough Sunday to face the New England Patriots in what many expect to be another gridiron classic between Tom Brady and Peyton Manning.

Now with the Denver Broncos, Manning will take the field against the Patriots for the first time in Foxborough since 2010.

Sunday’s game marks the 13th time Brady and Manning have started opposite one another overall. The Patriots have won six of the nine regular season games in which the two quarterbacks have faced each other. Brady and Manning have also faced each other three times in the postseason. The Patriots are 2-1 in those three playoff games.

The Patriots played the Broncos two times last season and won both the regular season and postseason meeting. New England traveled to Denver on Dec. 18, 2011 and overcame a 16-7 deficit to beat Denver, 41-23. The Patriots and Broncos met in a rematch in the AFC Divisional Playoffs on Jan. 14, 2012 at Gillette Stadium with the Patriots taking a 45-10 victory.

Sunday's game will be just the second played at Gillette Stadium through the first five weeks of the NFL season. Both the Patriots (2-2) and Broncos (2-2) are coming off impressive Week 4 wins.

If you are not attending Sunday’s game at Gillette Stadium, you can watch the game on CBS at 4:25 p.m. Jim Nantz will handle play-by-play duties while Phil Simms will provide analysis. If you are unable to watch the game on TV, you can listen to the game on the Patriots Radio Flagship Station, 98.5 The Sports Hub. Gil Santos will provide play-by-play while Scott Zolak will provide analysis.

Here's five things you need to know about Sunday's game:

1. Foxborough Parking Ban in Effect, Stadium Parking Information and Time Gates Open

Foxborough’s recently established parking bylaw that bans residents from parking vehicles on their property for a fee will be in effect once again Sunday. Those in violation of the parking ban will be subject to a $100 fine. Click here for more information. Foxborough Police Chief Edward O'Leary told Foxborough Patch there were no violations issued by police during the Patriots' Sept. 16 game against the Arizona Cardinals.

Due to the NFL changing the start of Sunday's game from 4:15 p.m. to 4:25 p.m., parking lots open for game day at 12:30 p.m. Gillette Stadium's gates open at 2:30 p.m. for admission to the game.

General Parking Rates for Gillette Stadium Lots

  • $40 for cars
  • $125 for RVs (enter P10 N from the North, Enter P11 from the South)
  • $125 for Limos (enter P1 N from north or P7 S from the south)
  • $200 for buses (Enter P10 N from the North, Enter P11 from the South)
  • $40 for motorcycles (one per space)

All Gillette Stadium Lots are cash only.

View the PDF file in the photo gallery above for a parking map of Gillette Stadium.

2. Allow Plenty of Time for Traffic Around the Stadium

Drivers are advised to allow themselves plenty of time when travelling near the stadium on game day. Traffic restrictions will be in place on local roads before and after Sunday's game. Fans must use I-95, I-495 or Route 140 to access Gillette Stadium.

Click here to keep an eye on game day traffic with Patch’s live traffic feature.

3. The Dos and Don’ts at Gillette Stadium

No one wants to be "that fan" that doesn't know the stadium's security protocol. Be prepared on game day by reviewing the dos and don’ts at Gillette Stadium as well as other useful information about the facility:

4. Patriots Promote Breast Cancer Awareness Sunday

The New England Patriots will promote breast cancer awareness during the month of October as part of the NFL and the American Cancer Society’s A Crucial Catch campaign and the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation’s (NEPCF) Celebrate Volunteerism initiative.

At this Sunday’s home game, the Patriots will highlight breast cancer awareness by honoring breast cancer survivors who will line up on the field with Patriots cheerleaders for player introductions as part of Celebrate Volunteerism’s week-long focus on healthcare volunteerism (Oct. 7-13). Breast cancer survivors participating in the on-field ceremony include Patriots defensive tackle Kyle Love’s mother-in-law, Wanda Walker. Other breast cancer survivors with ties to the team include Patriots head trainer Jim Whalen’s mother, Elaine Whalen, a two-time breast cancer survivor, as well as VP of Media and Community Relations Stacey James’ mother, Sylvia James, will also welcome the team onto the field.

In addition, Patriots and Pro Football Hall of Fame member Andre Tippett will present a $50,000 grant on behalf of the Patriots and NFL to the Community Health Center of Franklin County through the American Cancer Society’s CHANGE program which aims to provide breast cancer screenings and early detection programming to areas of greatest need. Fans can also learn more about breast cancer awareness and screenings at tables throughout Gillette Stadium and through announcements made during the game.

“We all know someone who has been affected by cancer,” said Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft. “This Sunday’s game will highlight the importance of early detection and education that could ultimately save a life. We want to spare our fans the heartache and difficulties of battling this life-threatening disease. Together, we aim to one day ‘kick’ cancer.”

Patriots players and coaches will wear pink game apparel against the Broncos and the following week at Seattle.

The Patriots and other NFL breast cancer awareness games will include:

  • Game balls with pink ribbon decals used for every down and pink kicking tees
  • Pink equipment for players including: cleats, wristbands, gloves, sideline caps, helmet decals,  chin straps, shoe laces, skull caps, sideline towels, eye shield decals and quarterback towels
  • Pink coins used for the coin toss
  • Pink sideline caps for coaches and sideline personnel and pink ribbon pins for coaches and team executives
  • Pink caps, wristbands, whistles and pins for game officials
  • On-field pink ribbon stencils and A Crucial Catch wall banners
  • Pink goal post padding in end zones
  • Breast cancer awareness pompoms, shirts and wristbands for cheerleaders

Game-worn pink merchandise and footballs will be autographed post-game and auctioned at NFL Auction (www.nfl.com/auction).  All NFL Auction proceeds from the sale of breast cancer awareness items during the month of October will benefit the American Cancer Society. Special pink merchandise will also be available at www.NFLShop.com, www.neweracap.com, www.nike.com, in stadium retail stores, at Dick’s Sporting Goods, Hatworld and Lids, with a portion of proceeds going to breast cancer charities. Pink products will also be available in the Patriots ProShop.

Following Sunday’s game, Patriots players will visit cancer survivors and thank healthcare volunteers as part of Patriots Community Tuesdays in conjunction with the Celebrate Volunteerism week-long focus on healthcare.

In 2010, the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation’s season-long Kick Cancer initiative aimed to raise awareness about cancer and the importance of early detection through messages to fans and the distribution of educational material at home games in partnership with Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Massachusetts General Hospital – the founding hospitals of Partners HealthCare – and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

5. Quick Hits About Sunday's Game at Gillette Stadium

  • Patriots are Wicked Good in October: The Patriots are 32-6 in the month of October since the 2003 season and have won 23 out of their last 26 October games. The Patriots are 18-1 at home and 14-5 on the road during that time in October. The Patriots only home loss during that time was a 41-17 victory by the visiting San Diego Chargers on Oct. 2, 2005.
  • Patriots-Broncos Series: The Patriots and Broncos will meet for the 46th time in series history, including three postseason meetings.
    The Patriots played the Broncos two times last season and won both the regular season and postseason meeting.
    New England traveled to Denver on Dec. 18, 2011, and overcame a 16-7 deficit to beat Denver, 41-23. The Patriots and Broncos met in a rematch in the AFC Divisional Playoffs on Jan. 14, 2012 at Gillette Stadium with the Patriots taking a 45-10 victory.
    Denver leads the all-time regular-season series with a 25-17 advantage and is 2-1 in the postseason against New England. In addition to the 2011 postseason game, New England lost a Divisional playoff game at Denver during the 1986 and 2005 playoffs. Both of those games were played in Denver.
    Of the 45 previous games in the series, 27 have been played in Denver. The Patriots have played more games against the Broncos than any other team that has never been in New England’s division. The Patriots are 9-9 all-time against Denver in home games, including 2-2 against Denver at Gillette Stadium.
    The history between the teams dates back to the first days of the American Football League in 1960. The Patriots played the Broncos in the inaugural game of each franchise, a 13-10 Denver win on Sept. 9, 1960 at
    B.U. Field. The teams squared off twice a year in the decade prior to the AFL-NFL merger, with the Patriots taking a 10-7 advantage out of those games.
  • Brady-Manning Showdown: Tom Brady and Peyton Manning have had many epic games against each other over the course of their careers. This week’s game will be the first Brady-Manning game that does not involve the Indianapolis Colts. Despite playing in separate divisions following the 2002 NFL division reformatting, the Patriots and the Colts played each other an astounding 14 times since 2001 overall. With the exception of the 2011 regular season matchup — a game which Manning missed due to a neck injury — and the 2008 regular season game that Brady missed following an ACL tear, Brady and Manning have started at quarterback for their respective teams in every game dating back to Sept. 30, 2001. Sunday’s game between the Patriots and the Broncos will mark the 13th time that Brady and Manning have started opposite one another.
    Although Manning holds a regular season advantage over Brady in touchdowns, yards and completions, the Patriots have won six of the nine regular season games in which the two quarterbacks have faced each other.
    Brady and Manning have also faced each other three times in the postseason. The Patriots are 2-1 in those three playoff games with Brady posting a better passer rating (81.7) than Manning (61.0).
  • What to Watch For: With one touchdown pass against Denver, Brady will extend his streak to 37 straight games with at least one touchdown pass and break a tie with Brett Favre (36) for the third longest streak all time, behind Johnny Unitas (47) and Drew Brees (47-current).
    Brady has 48 career 300 yard games in the regular season and needs one more to tie Warren Moon (49) for 7th place all time. If Brady reaches 300 yards against Denver it will be the third time in his career that he has had at least a four- game stretch of 300 yard games. His career best is five straight 300-yard games in 2009. The NFL record is Drew Brees with nine consecutive 300 yard games (2011-12). Brady has thrown for 300 yards or more in 7 out of his last 8 regular season games; Stephen Gostkowski (7-of-10) needs one more 50-yard field goal to tie Adam Vinatieri (8-of-17) for most 50-yard field goals in Patriots history. Gostkowski has two 50 yarders so far in 2012 and can become the first Patriots player with three 50 yard field goals in a single season; Wes Welker (31) needs one more touchdown reception to break out of a tie for seventh place with Troy Brown on the Patriots all-time touchdown reception list. Welker (14) needs one more 10-plus catch game to tie Andre Johnson (15) of Houston for the most 10-plus reception games among active players. Reggie Wayne also had 14 10-plus reception games.
    Welker needs one reception to extend his streak to 82 straight regular-season games with at least one reception as a member of the Patriots to extend his franchise record. Welker has an overall streak of 98 straight regular- season games with at least one reception, including his time with the Miami Dolphins; The Patriots have had two straight games with two receivers reaching 100 yards. It is the fourth time in team history that the team has had back-to-back games with two receivers at 100 yards. The Patriots have never had three straight games with two 100-yard receivers.
    The Patriots will be looking for their first back-to-back games with a 100-yard rusher since Laurence Maroney in 2007.
  • Pregame Music: Gentlemen Hall will be the pregame band, perfoming in Patriot Place Plaza at 3 p.m.

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