Sports

10 key Patriots numbers before the Jaguars in the AFC Championship game

10 key Patriots numbers before the Jaguars in the AFC Championship game

Not at the top, at least. The Jaguars are in the title game for the third time in franchise history, one victory away from their first Super Bowl appearance.

But what's also evident is how the Patriots love to toil, what a taste for tedium they have.

Their path here has been relatively impressive, too.

Minnesota has the NFL's top-ranked defense, and Jennings credits head coach Mike Zimmer for changing the culture of the team for the better.

After being suspended for the first four games, Brady continued his redemption tour by lighting up the Steelers and advancing to another Super Bowl.

"No one was ever really saying it".

The Eagles used steady play by Foles and a late goal-line stand by their defense to beat the Atlanta Falcons 15-10 on Saturday.

It ultimately brought players closer, making them accountable to each other and causing them to care more for each other.

The game was a tale of two halves, with New England losing it in the 3rd and 4th quarters.

And as they met for the last time before the cycle begins anew in March, they didn't offer any.

Belichick's players often say that the coaches tell them experience means nothing. Hoyer said he didn't see Brady get hurt and wouldn't elaborate on how much he's been able to do in practice the last two days.

Pittsburgh had probably the most dynamic offense in the entire NFL.

More news: Bristol team makes waves with acoustic tractor beam

Running back Le'Veon Bell stressed there were "no excuses" heading into the postseason.

That didn't happen, however. He had to throw 53 times, but he completed 35 of his attempts for 337 yards and three touchdowns.

This wasn't just a one-week wonder type of showing, either.

The Patriots and Jaguars did not play in the 2017 regular season, but there is some reason to believe this could be a favorable matchup for the Patriots. Whether he's grinding out tough yardage, busting long gains or finishing off touchdown runs, he's the catalyst for this team right now.

Veteran offensive lineman David DeCastro was not entertained by the Pittsburgh Steelers' trash talk of the New England Patriots before their playoff exit. RB Leonard Fournette rushed for 109 yards and three TDs in last week's divisional win. The 17th ranked rushing defense this season started off struggling against the likes of Kansas City.

It doesn't get a whole lot better elsewhere for the Pats defensively, either.

Blake Bortles doesn't strike a ton of fear into New England's secondary, but that's still a ranking that's hard to ignore. The Jags are extremely strong through the air, but they do have some weak spots in their defense against the run.

The Patriots defense is middle of the road when it comes to stopping the run. The Jaguars have by the far number one passing defense in the National Football League allowing about 22 yards less per game than the second place Vikings, but they rank just 21st in the National Football League in rush defense.

"They say (stuff) rolls downhill", Jackson said. If you don't have a team everybody's chasing and trying to model, then no one really knows what the bar is.

Expect the Jaguars to do what Denver did a couple of years ago.

To put it bluntly, the Jags are scary good. Regardless of whether I am the worst quarterback in the league or the best quarterback in the league, or somewhere in between, it's just my job to do the best I can for us every week.


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