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AFC Championship Game Preview: Patriots at Chiefs

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NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (11-5) AT KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (12-4)
Sunday, Jan. 20, 2019 at 6:40 p.m. ET. Arrowhead Stadium (76,416)

The New England Patriots advanced to an NFL-record eighth consecutive AFC Championship Game. The Patriots are also now the only team in NFL history to advance in the playoffs for eight straight seasons (2011-18).

A win over Kansas City in the AFC Championship Game would give the Patriots their third straight Super Bowl appearance and extend their NFL record to 11 Super Bowl appearances. The Patriots can join Miami (3) and Buffalo (4) as the only teams to reach three consecutive Super Bowls.

SERIES HISTORY

The New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs will meet for the second time in 2018 and for the second time in the postseason. The Patriots hosted the Chiefs on Oct. 14 in a Sunday Night Football game and came out with a 43-40 victory. The two teams met in the 2015 AFC Divisional Playoffs with New England claiming a 27-20 win on Jan. 16, 2016, at Gillette Stadium in their lone postseason matchup.

This year’s regular-season game was the fourth straight primetime game between the two teams. New England defeated Kansas City, 34-3, on a Monday Night game in 2011, lost 41-14 on Monday Night in 2014 and fell to Kansas City on Kickoff Weekend on Thursday Night at Gillette Stadium, 42-27, on Sept. 7, 2017, and beat Kansas City this year on Sunday Night Football.

Kansas City holds a 18-14-3 edge over New England, including an 11-3-1 advantage in games played in Kansas City and a 5-1 record at Arrowhead Stadium. The Chiefs are 7-11-2 in games played at New England, including 1-4 at Gillette Stadium (1-5 including playoffs).

The two teams played twice a year from 1960 until the 1970 AFL-NFL merger as two of the original American Football League teams.

SERIES BREAKDOWN

KANSAS CITY 18, NEW ENGLAND 14 (3 TIES)

Record in New England, 11-7-2

  • Record in Foxborough, 8-3
  • Schaefer/Sullivan/Foxboro Stadium, 4-2
  • Gillette Stadium, 4-1
  • Record in Boston, 3-4-2

Road Record, 3-11-1

  • Record in Kansas City, 2-9-1
  • Municipal Stadium, 1-4-1
  • Arrowhead Stadium, 1-5
  • Record in Dallas, 1-2

Since 1970 AFL-NFL Merger, 9-9

Largest Margin of Victory, 10 points (11/21/11)

Largest Margin of Defeat, 34 points (12/11/60)

TALE OF THE TAPE

2018 Regular Season New England Kansas City
Record 11-5 12-4
Divisional Standings 1st 1st
Total Yards Gained 6,295 6,810
Total Offense (Rank) 393.4 (5) 425.6 (1)
Rush Offense 127.3 (5) 115.9 (16)
Pass Offense 266.1 (8) 309.7 (3)
Points Per Game 27.3 (4) 35.3 (1)
Total Yards Allowed 5,746 6,488
Total Defense (Rank) 359.1 (21) 405.5 (31)
Rush Defense 112.7 (11) 132.1 (27)
Pass Defense 246.4 (22) 273.4 (31)
Points Allowed/Game 20.3 (7) 26.3 (24)
Possession Avg. 31:05 28:56
Sacks Allowed/Yards Lost 21/147 26/171
Sacks Made/Yards 30/238 52/347
Total Touchdowns Scored 51 71
Penalties Against/Yards 93/744 137/1152
Punts/Avg. 64/45.1 45/44.9
Turnover Differential +10 (5) +9 (6)

LAST MEETING

The New England Patriots improved to 4-2 after K Stephen Gostkowski kicked a 28-yard game-winning field goal at the buzzer to lift the Patriots to a 43-40 victory over the visiting Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday Night Football. Kansas City entered the game with a perfect 5-0 mark.

Kansas City QB Patrick Mahomes connected with WR Tyreek Hill on a 75-yard touchdown pass to tie the game at 40 with 3:03 remaining. The touchdown helped Kansas City erase a 15-point halftime deficit after New England took a 24-9 first-half lead.

The Patriots offense produced 500 total yards and did not punt or commit a penalty, marking the first such occurrence in the Super Bowl era.

During the game-winning drive, Michel converted a third-and-1 and two plays later, Brady and Gronkowski connected on a 39-yard play to get to the Kansas City 9-yard line. After Brady took a knee, Gostkowski drilled a 28-yard game-winning field goal as time expired to give New England the win.

PASSING PERFORMANCES

Tom Brady owns a 5-3 regular-season record against Kansas City and is slated to start against the Chiefs for the second time in the postseason.

IF THE PATRIOTS WIN...

  • The Patriots will advance to their 11th Super Bowl, extending their own record for most in NFL history.
  • The Patriots will set a new NFL record for most postseason wins in a decade with 15. The record is currently held by New England (2000s), Dallas (1970s) and Pittsburgh (1970s) with 14 postseason wins in a decade.
  • The Patriots will improve their all-time franchise mark in the playoffs to 36-20 (.643), the best playoff winning percentage in NFL history among teams that have played at least 15 playoff games.
  • The Patriots will improve to 11-4 in the AFC Championship game.
  • The Patriots will earn their 36th postseason win in franchise history, tying Pittsburgh for the most postseason wins all-time.
  • The Patriots will join Miami (3) and Buffalo (4) as the only teams to reach three consecutive Super Bowls.
  • Bill Belichick will win his ninth conference championship as a head coach, the most in NFL history during the Super Bowl era (since 1966).
  • Tom Brady will win his ninth conference title, the most for a starting quarterback in NFL history during the Super Bowl era (since 1966).

WHAT TO LOOK FOR...

  • The Patriots will play in their eighth consecutive conference championship game, extending their NFL record for consecutive championship game appearances.
  • The Patriots will play in their 15th conference championship game, tying the San Francisco 49er's for second-most in NFL history.
  • The Patriots will play in their 56th playoff game in franchise history in the AFC Championship, tying Green Bay for third-most postseason games in NFL history.
  • The Patriots need one more Super Bowl win to tie the Pittsburgh Steelers (6) for most Super Bowl wins in NFL History. They are currently tied with Dallas (5) and San Francisco (5) with five Super Bowl wins.

BROADCAST INFORMATION

TELEVISION: This week’s game will be broadcast by CBS and can be seen locally on WBZ-TV Channel 4. Jim Nantz will handle play-by-play duties with Tony Romo as the color analyst. Tracy Wolfson, Evan Washburn and Jay Feely will work from the sidelines. The game will be produced by Jim Rikhoff and directed by Mike Arnold.

NATIONAL RADIO: Sunday's game will be broadcast on Westwood One with Kevin Kugler calling the play-by-play and Tony Boselli as analyst. Ross Tucker will provide sideline analysis.

LOCAL RADIO: 98.5 The Sports Hub is the flagship station for the Patriots Radio Network. A complete listing of the network's 41 stations can be found here. Play-by-play broadcaster Bob Socci will call the action along with former Patriots quarterback Scott Zolak, who will provide color analysis. The games are produced by Marc Cappello.

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