Croft comes in for James Haskell as one of three changes from the team that started against Ireland.
Simon Shaw, first capped in 1996, will make his 51st international appearance after taking over from Nick Kennedy, and Ugo Monye is included as Paul Sackey recovers from a calf muscle injury. Monye starts on the left wing with Mark Cueto switching to the right.
Ellis and Flood continue at half-back, and there is a place for Tigers tighthead prop Julian White among the replacements.
George Chuter and Louis Deacon, who trained with the England squad this week, have now returned to Leicester.
Croft will win his 12th cap in what he expects to be a physical clash.
He said: "We've got to front up physically because France have a big pack and when we get some space we have to have a go.
"I can't wait for Sunday to come. I'm pleased to be involved, it's an honour to pull on the shirt for your country.
"As long as I'm playing, whether it's back row or second row, I don't mind," he added.
Tigers hooker Benjamin Kayser is named among the France replacements.
England v France will be shown live on BBC One on Sunday, March 15 (3pm).
England (v France, Twickenham, Sunday)
15 Delon Armitage (London Irish)
14 Mark Cueto (Sale Sharks)
13 Mike Tindall (Gloucester Rugby)
12 Riki Flutey (London Wasps)
11 Ugo Monye (Harlequins)
10 Toby Flood (Leicester Tigers)
9 Harry Ellis (Leicester Tigers)
1 Andrew Sheridan (Sale Sharks)
2 Lee Mears (Bath Rugby)
3 Phil Vickery (London Wasps)
4 Steve Borthwick (Saracens, captain)
5 Simon Shaw (London Wasps)
6 Tom Croft (Leicester Tigers)
7 Joe Worsley (London Wasps)
8 Nick Easter (Harlequins)
16 Dylan Hartley ((Northampton Saints)
17 Julian White (Leicester Tigers)
18 Nick Kennedy (London Irish)
19 James Haskell (London Wasps)
20 Danny Care (Harlequins)
21 Andy Goode (CA Brive)
22 Mathew Tait (Sale Sharks)