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Champ Bailey: Patriots' offense 'hit us in the mouth'

The Denver Broncos prepared for speed, but what they encountered in Sunday's 31-21 loss to the New England Patriots exceeded all expectations.

On NFL Replay
NFL Replay
will re-air the New England Patriots' 31-21 win over the Denver  Broncos in Week 5 on Tuesday, Oct. 9 at 9:30 p.m. ET.

Denver never caught up with New England's high-paced, no-huddle attack, which pumped out an astonishing 85 plays (minus four sacks), including 45 in the first half alone. By comparison, the Jacksonville Jaguars needed four quarters to orchestrate 53 in their 41-3 loss to the Chicago Bears on Sunday.

"We worked on everything they did to us," Broncos cornerback Champ Bailey told Comcast SportsNet England. "There wasn't no surprises. They just hit us in the mouth and we didn't hit back hard enough."

Scary thought: New England's offense is still heating up. The Patriots ran 60 plays in February's Super Bowl. This season they went from 66 plays against the Tennessee Titans and 74 against the Arizona Cardinals, to 75 against the Baltimore Ravens and another 76 plays in a wipeout of the Buffalo Bills.

"That was fast," Broncos tight end Chris Gronkowski (Brother of "Gronk") said. "I don't think I've seen anybody play that fast before and I've watched a lot of their games."

This kind of play count would suggest a short, quick-release passing game, but 54 of those 85 snaps were runs, helping the Patriots to chew up 35-plus minutes of possession time. There are hints of Chip Kelly's rapid-fire spread attack that's turned the University of Oregon into a yardage machine, but Belichick's influences date back much earlier than that.

New England's young backs Stevan Ridley and Brandon Bolden are major figures in this scheme, and Josh McDaniels' ground attack churned out 251 yards against the Broncos and another 247 against the Bills in Week 4.

All of this has been done without tight end Aaron Hernandez, who might be the most versatile weapon on the roster.

New England is recreating this offense from week to week and -- oh, by the way -- they still have quarterback Tom Brady pressing the buttons on this machine. It's only October. January could be a scary thing indeed for anyone in their way.

Follow Marc Sessler on Twitter @MarcSesslerNFL.

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