Patriots qualify for seventh consecutive AFC title game with easy victory

AP

The Patriots are in the AFC Championship Game. What else is new?

It marks the seventh consecutive year New England is in the conference title game. The last time Tom Brady and the Patriots weren’t Mark Sanchez and the Jets were as they beat New England 28-21 in the divisional round in 2010. The Patriots’ streak is greater than the total title game appearances of 21 other franchises.

Saturday’s game was close for a quarter . . . and then it wasn’t.

After Tennessee took a 7-0 lead, the Patriots outscored the Titans 35-0 before a late Tennessee touchdown. New England easily covered the 13 1/2-point spread with a 35-14 victory and total domination. At one point in the fourth quarter, the Patriots had 30 first downs to the Titans’ 39 plays.

The Patriots ended up outgaining the Titans 438 to 267. New England ran 80 plays and had 31 first downs.

Brady completed 35 of 53 passes for 337 yards and three touchdowns as he set an NFL record with his 10th career postseason game with three touchdown passes. Danny Amendola had his first career 100-yard receiving game, catching 11 passes for 112 yards. James White scored two touchdowns, and Chris Hogan and Rob Gronkowski each had one.

The Patriots recorded eight sacks of Marcus Mariota, with Deatrich Wise Jr. and Geneo Grissom getting two each. It was the most sacks of Mariota in his career.

Since 2001, the Patriots are 37-1 when they have at least five sacks in a game.

Mariota completed 22 of 37 passes for 254 yards and two touchdowns.

New England now has qualified for the AFC Championship Game in 12 of the 16 years with Brady and Bill Belichick at the helm.

And for the fifth time in seven years, the Patriots will host the AFC title game. The winner of the Pittsburgh-Jacksonville game will travel to New England next week with a trip to the Super Bowl at stake.

89 responses to “Patriots qualify for seventh consecutive AFC title game with easy victory

  1. Thanks to ESPN and the salty haters. Had you not got NE riled up they wouldn’t be heading to their seventh consecutive conference game.

  2. Brady now gets to enjoy an extra day off because he got the Saturday DIvision game for the 10th time and 5th time in a row.

    Horrible division gives Pats leg up on getting a bye, Refs help in game with calls, league then helps giving them the Saturday game, all these small advantages add up.

    What’s Brady’s record when not getting the extra day off? 1-2

  3. Remember when everyone said there was a rift in New England and the ride was over? State farm remembers.

  4. Road to the SUPERBOWL once again goes thru the RAZOR…..Remember when the Pats were 2-2 & had the worst D in the NFL thru the 1st 5 weeks & the DYNASTY was over??!!
    WISHING IT TO BE JUST DOESN’T MAKE IT SO!!!!

  5. The only teams that have a chance against the Patriots are the Steelers and the Saints. The Eagles, Jaguars and Vikings don’t have the offense to keep up to them.

  6. Possibly one of the worst officiated games. Look, let’s be realistic, I doubt anyone came into this game thinking the Titans would win but the refs killed many of their drives or chances with penalties. Not saying it is the Pats fault but one of the many reasons viewership is down in the league is because people get tired seeing officials throw flags.

    If it is egregious, throw the flag, if not let them play ball. Of course it would be poor of me if I didn’t mention that the Titans were also their own worst enemy. with a chance to potentially score some points before the half ended, with them getting the ball back in the 3rd quarter, they called the worst 4th down run I have seen.

    The better team won but the league needs to really do something about the officiating

  7. So the AFC East has had a team in the AFC Championship for 11 out of the last 12 years. Good thing it’s such an easy division.

  8. Boring AFC.
    The Patriots need more than 1 challenging team like the Steelers.
    C’mon AFC, get your teams together. especially the AFC East. Make them at least work hard for it.

  9. Yes, it was an easy victory, especially when the opposing team realizes the refs won’t let them win so they give up.

  10. Jimmy WHO?
    TB12 for 4 more years….Pats don’t even need to use a draft pick on a QB this year…. they’ll have 3 more years to find their DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH…..just keep building the MACHINE!!!!
    Go Pats!!!

  11. There is nothing to say.

    That pass Brady threw to Amendola rolling to his right, turning and throwing a perfect floater falling backwards was beautiful.

    Patsies just did what the patsies do.

    That call reversal giving the patsies a first down was questionable, at best.

    But, they marched 91yds for the TD.

    There is nothing to say.

    Tip of the cap to NE…now go shovel snow.

  12. As routine as putting on your pants in the morning. 35 unanswered points. At no point did the Titans have a chance. Not even with an early lead.

    We’re on to Pittsburgh…

  13. Ahhh, it never gets old. I wish all my friends could experience it. Once we’re done in 5 or 6 years, anyway.

  14. Looks like the wheels are really coming off in Foxboro. ESPN is fake news. Seth Wickersham = Goodell Clown College Alumni.

  15. Hey guys, if you could just put all that salt in a pile over here, that’d be great – we got snow coming in Boston this week so we could use a little extra.

    Now for the cheap-shot Jags to break the Steelers into little pieces, but still manage to Bortles it up so Pittsburgh ends up coming to Foxboro…

  16. Pats won because they’re just a better team than the Titans in every regard, and on top of that, they played better today than the Titans by a mile. Refs didn’t decide the game.

    That said, it still doesn’t excuse the awful officiating that clearly favored the Pats, which seems to be a recurring theme this year…even a Pats fan has to admit that not all of the questionable calls this year should have favored NE the way they did.

  17. Once the Pats woke up, they rolled and rolled…
    Although Titans had one flaky call go against them, they couldn’t get anything going once Mariota couldn’t run. Was kind of shocking to see the old man throw a cross field bucket shot to Amendola. Pretty sweet.
    Geesh, if the Pats can duplicate in the next game…won’t really matter who they face.

  18. Even Romo was calling out the Pats for their blatant cheating. It’s unbelievable how they continue to get away with this.

    ————————————-

    He showed how one play where Tennessee was running it, New England stacked guys in the middle, and then on the pass play, New England called it perfectly. This isn’t psychology or just luck, New England knows what play they are calling based on listening to their headphones.

  19. I guess the league got scared after the Titans got off to a good start, so the fix was in. Once the hole was dug there wasn’t much way for TN to climb their way out. I feel bad for the Jags because I’m betting the league wants Pats vs. Steelers in the AFC title game. Either way, I don’t see how anybody can handle the Pats with the refs in their back pocket.

  20. But everyone knows the Patriots are only good because of luck, refs, deflating footballs and the easiest division in the history of sports! It’s just not fair!! Waaah! 😥

  21. MCxShow says:
    January 13, 2018 at 11:52 pm
    That BSPN article sure was spot on

    Oh wait…
    ——————
    Yep. Great point.
    When I posted a comment on that “firestorm”, I said it would have a boomerang effect and have the exact opposite result than the predicted collapse by the patriots. When will the Patriot haters ever learn?

    That was a smackdown WWE style.

  22. Wasn’t Tenn coming in with their big physical off and def lines and going to make this game into a close slugfest?
    This crap about ref’s and fixing……….give it up.
    It was 28 pt margin in the fourth.

    Wipe away those tears.

  23. Horrible division gives Pats leg up on getting a bye, Refs help in game with calls, league then helps giving them the Saturday game, all these small advantages add up.

    ___

    Hey, whats the division you think that is heads and shoulders above the AFC East?
    AFC North? With Cleveland? Or maybe the Bengals?
    AFC South? With Texans, Colts, and Jaguars?
    AFC West? Raiders? Chargers?

    The North usually has Pittsburgh at the top, sometimes the Ravens are good, most times not. Look up their record since 2002. The Bengals were good for like 4-5 seasons. Heck the Jets matched that. Cleveland? Worst team in the league.

    The South WAS Indy’s division for many years. When it was theirs the rest of the division was god awful. Houston started in 2002 and is 110-146. They have a 10 win season and a 12 win season. in 2015 they WON the division with a record 9-7. To win the division with a 9-7 record is horrible. Jacksonville, since 2002, has won 6 games or LESS 9 times. The Titans were good in 2002,2003, 2007 and 2008. Aside from that, they have not been good.

    The West? I’d say the Broncos have been the best there. Good from 2002-2005. The middle of the road from 2006-2011. Then very good again when they got Manning for 4 years. Now not so good. The Chiefs are usually OK. They’ve been pretty goood the last 5 years but they also have 2 2win, 2 4win, and 5 other seasons where they won 8 games or less. The Raiders? Absolutely awful since 2002, never winning more than 8 games in that span except for 2016. The Chargers? Good early in 2002-2006 when they had LT and Rivers. Mostly just average though.

    Just because different teams from each division rise up every so often doesn’t mean they are always good. When it happens the other teams in the division drop down so they aren’t good at the same time.

    Argument doesn’t hold water.

  24. pittsburghdamned says:
    January 14, 2018 at 1:50 am
    And all thanks to a bogus call against the Steelers.
    Thank you NFL, for once again giving the Pats a free ride.

    ———————————————————————
    Everyone that was watching the recent Patriots\Steelers game saw the no call on the flagrant offensive pass interference where Martavis Bryant’s “touchdown” handed the Steelers the undeserved 17-10 lead going into halftime. Must be a new rule that allows players to push off as long as they keep pushing during the entire play while only using one hand the make the catch.

    Everyone that was watching the recent Patriots\Titans playoff game saw the no call on the OPI where Corey Davis did a similar one handed catch while the other arm was being used to push off the Malcolm Butler. That no call gave the Titans the early lead in that game. That OPI wasn’t as flagrant at what Martavis Bryant got away with for the Steelers. But it was obvious that Davis learned that move by watching film of the Patriots\Steelers game.

    With the refs not making these calls in order to help the Steelers and the Titans, the Patriots defenders had no chance on these plays. If the Pats defenders had pushed the arms away that were being used for the push offs they will be called for defensive interference.

  25. Brady completed 35 of 53 passes for 337 yards
    ————–

    That YPA is Tyrod Tayloresque. YPC is lower than every QB in the world.

    _____

    35 points scored – higher than any teams average PPG.

  26. pittsburghdamned says:
    January 14, 2018 at 1:50 am
    And all thanks to a bogus call against the Steelers.

    Thank you NFL, for once again giving the Pats a free ride.

    ____

    Man, you sound like a Steelers player, always whining.

    It was a good call, you are just butt hurt

  27. The league stole 2 first round picks from the Patriots and suspended their future HOF first ballot lock QB for 4 games for no real reason other than the face they could and fought them in court making an effort through lies and leaks to drag said QB through the dirt.

    And now we’re expected to believe they rigged the playoffs in favor of the Patriots. 🙂

    Patriot Hater really isn’t very bright are they.

    🙂

  28. I told you all. That Jerry Springer stuff was just going to reinforce the Pats resolve to lay waste to the competition on the road to hoisting another Lombardi.

  29. The Patriots have never had a call go against them. I know because I have watched every one of their games in a very objective manner. They would not have been to any Super Bowl or won any games if the refs and the league did not cheat for them. The Brady suspension was really just a negotiated vacation so that Brady would be well rested for the playoffs. Also, their division stinks. I know their record is better outside of their division but that’s only because of the refs. The mighty Steelers would have 10 Super Bowls if the league and refs were not against them. Also, Coach Tomlin did not trip that guy!

  30. randomcommenter says:
    January 13, 2018 at 11:53 pm
    Brady now gets to enjoy an extra day off because he got the Saturday DIvision game for the 10th time and 5th time in a row.
    Horrible division gives Pats leg up on getting a bye, Refs help in game with calls, league then helps giving them the Saturday game, all these small advantages add up.
    What’s Brady’s record when not getting the extra day off? 1-2
    ______________________________________________________________________
    What other team in the AFC had 2 teams make the playoffs? Worst division in the league-I doubt it.

  31. bartpkelly says:
    January 13, 2018 at 11:59 pm
    Boring AFC.
    The Patriots need more than 1 challenging team like the Steelers.
    C’mon AFC, get your teams together. especially the AFC East. Make them at least work hard for it.
    _____________________________________________________________________________________
    I know the steelers play in such a competitive division! Cleveland and cincy. Don’t talk about the AFC East, who had 2 playoff teams!!!

  32. The best part was Tony Romo having to eat his “won’t be a cakewalk” line and then having to acknowledge late in the game that this one was no contest. I know the producers need to have him hype matchups at the start but his comments about Ten being more physical on both sides of the ball were just ridiculous.

  33. I am tired of officiating when it comes to the Patriots. The Titans didn’t deserve to be in the playoffs, or rather were the worst playoff team in the mix and by far. But the calls that extended drives – those refs need to be fired.

    And to the last comment about how the Steelers play in the same competitive level division as the Pats – that’s crap. It’s not all about the playoffs genius. It’s about teams that know how to win football games. They played – and beat – more teams with winning records than the Patriots. You can’t rate SOS on 2016 records, it’s about who is winning today.

  34. triptomlin says:
    January 14, 2018 at 8:50 am
    The Patriots have never had a call go against them. I know because I have watched every one of their games in a very objective manner. They would not have been to any Super Bowl or won any games if the refs and the league did not cheat for them. The Brady suspension was really just a negotiated vacation so that Brady would be well rested for the playoffs. Also, their division stinks. I know their record is better outside of their division but that’s only because of the refs. The mighty Steelers would have 10 Super Bowls if the league and refs were not against them. Also, Coach Tomlin did not trip that guy!

    ——
    Don’t forget. The Patriots didn’t earn the win this year against the Steelers the refs gave it to them….and everyone knows that the Steelers earned that win over the Seahawks in Super Bowl XL so stop complaining about those refs in that game!

  35. reddzen says:
    January 14, 2018 at 9:42 am
    I am tired of officiating when it comes to the Patriots. The Titans didn’t deserve to be in the playoffs, or rather were the worst playoff team in the mix and by far. But the calls that extended drives – those refs need to be fired.

    And to the last comment about how the Steelers play in the same competitive level division as the Pats – that’s crap. It’s not all about the playoffs genius. It’s about teams that know how to win football games. They played – and beat – more teams with winning records than the Patriots. You can’t rate SOS on 2016 records, it’s about who is winning today
    —-
    The Steelers division is a garbage fire and playing in the AFC North did nothing but benefit the Steelers.

    That’s not opinion, that’s fact. 🙂

  36. “When you’re in easiest division in the history of sports you get many automatic wins, then qualify for home playoff games, who couldn’t make the championship game every season with all that in your favor??”

    Unfortunately for you, here in reality none of the numbers or facts back up this statement. Its just another unsubstantiated excuse you people cling to because the Patriots have had you on full tilt for 20 years.

  37. “When you’re in easiest division in the history of sports ”

    Please stop with that oh so tired Pats hater myth #1. For the last 15 years the AFCE is #3 in wins outside their division, with or without the division leader included.

    Just because you stomp your virtual feet and scream like small children doesn’t change the actual facts that the AFCE is actually one of the better divisions, and its the fact that the Pats are the best run team in the league that keeps them on top. All this desperate effort to make yourselves feel better by trying to claim the Pats aren’t very good is both hilarious and pathetic.

  38. PresidentTrumpIsRightRespectYourCountryAndFlag says:
    January 14, 2018 at 10:13 am

    When you’re in easiest division in the history of sports you get many automatic wins, then qualify for home playoff games, who couldn’t make the championship game every season with all that in your favor??
    ——————————————————————————————————-

    If that was true….then such a team would go into the playoffs and have to face the superior teams from the tough conferences and would not have a chance to win. Especially after having played easy games all season…they would not be prepared to play against the level of skill an talent like those teams who played all the tough opponents. Such a team would never get to a superbowl…let alone win a superbowl.

    Brady has 5 rings and he is currently competing for a 6th.

  39. reddzen says:
    January 14, 2018 at 9:42 am
    And to the last comment about how the Steelers play in the same competitive level division as the Pats – that’s crap.
    ________________________________________________________________

    Your right, the AFCN doesn’t hold a candle to the AFCE. As a Browns fan you should be painfully aware of that

  40. I said it before the Titans would melt at the like little snowflakes in the mystique of Gillette in January. They just got out coached.

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