Belichick, with a six point lead and 2:08 on the clock, opted to go for it on fourth-and-2 from his own 28-yard line and failed. Colts quarterback Peyton Manning threw the winning touchdown pass four plays later.
As a former defender on that team, I would've cared less about the result of that fourth-down attempt. The decision to go for it would be enough to make my blood boil for weeks. Bill Belichick sent a message to his defense. He felt that his chances were better to go for it on his own 28-yard line than to punt it away and make Peyton Manning have to drive the majority of the field to win the game.
I would look at this decision as a lack of confidence in our ability as a defensive unit to come up with a big play to win the game. If I'm Jerod Mayo, Gary Guyton, Darius Butler, Jonathan Wilhite, Brandon Meriweather and Brandon McGowan -- to name a few -- I'm wondering why we weren't given the chance to do what we've been coached to do ever since the first day we practiced.
Bruschi shares similar sentiments in an interview with John Buccigross: