Every Thursday on ESPNBoston.com, there is a Patriots chat in the late morning/early afternoon. Today's chat kicked off at 11 a.m. ET, can be recapped here, and included some of the following topics:
1. Patriots defensive plans without linebacker Brandon Spikes.
2. Deion Branch signing with the Colts, and what makes them a foe to respect.
3. Cornerback Aqib Talib, assessing his play since coming from back from a hip injury, and projecting his role in the game plan.
4. Projecting wet weather and how that might impact both teams.
5. Grind it out with the running game ... or air it out?
6. Playing without WR Aaron Dobson and what the Patriots miss with his absence.
7. NFL divisional-round playoff predictions.