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Game Notes: Belichick ties Landry with 10th appearance in conference title game

TEAM NOTES 

ROBERT KRAFT EARNS HIS 25th POSTSEASON WIN
The Patriots have now won 25 playoff games since Robert Kraft purchased the team in 1994. Kraft has 25 career postseason wins and now has the third-most postseason wins by an ownership group in NFL history. 
WINS    OWNERSHIP
34    The Rooney Family, Pittsburgh (1933-present)
32    Green Bay Packers, Inc., Green Bay (1919-present)
25    Robert Kraft, New England (1994-present)
24    The Mara Family, New York Giants (1925-present)
22    Eddie DeBartalo, Jr., San Francisco (1977-1999)
21    Al Davis, Oakland/Los Angeles (1972-2011)
20    Clint Murchison, Jr., Dallas (1960-1984)

PATRIOTS ADVANCE TO THEIR FIFTH STRAIGHT AFC TITLE GAME
The Patriots have advanced to the AFC Championship game for the fifth straight season, joining Oakland (5 - 1973-77) as the only teams in NFL history to reach five straight conference championship games.

PATRIOTS END CHIEFS 11-GAME WINNING STREAK
The Chiefs entered today's game having won 11 straight games (including playoffs), which makes them the third team that the Patriots have defeated in the Bill Belichick era (2000-present) that entered the postseason on a winning streak of 10 games or more. In addition to breaking the Chiefs' streak, in the 2006 season, the Patriots defeated the Chargers in the divisional playoffs, who had won 10 in a row, and in the 2004 AFC Championship they defeated the Steelers, who had won 15 straight entering the game.

MOST FREQUENT CONF. CHAMPIONSHIP PARTICIPANT OVER LAST TWO DECADES
With the victory over the Chiefs, the Patriots will appear in the AFC Championship Game for the fifth consecutive season.  The Patriots have been the most frequent NFL team to appear in the conference championship round of the playoffs over the last 20 years, having qualified for more than half of the AFC title games over that span (11-of-20).  Additionally, over the last 15 years (2001-15), the Patriots will have appeared in two-thirds of the AFC championship games held over that span (10-of-15) and have made it to the conference championship round in seven of the last 10 seasons.

PATRIOTS ADVANCE TO 12th AFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME OVERALL
The Patriots are 8-3 in AFC Championship Games, including a 5-1 record at home and a 4-1 record at Gillette Stadium. 

MOST APPEARANCES IN CONF. CHAMPIONSHIP GAME
Pittsburgh*    15
San Francisco    15
Dallas    14
New England    12
Oakland    11
St. Louis Rams    9
Denver*    9
*-Pending Results of This Weekend's Games

PATRIOTS ALL-TIME IN PLAYOFF GAMES
The Patriots have compiled a 29-18 record in their 47 playoff games and their .617 playoff winning percentage is second in NFL history among teams that have played at least 15 playoff games.

Most Playoff wins in NFL History
Team            Playoff Wins
Dallas            34
Pittsburgh*        34
Green Bay*        32
San Francisco        30
New England        29
*-Pending Results of This Weekend's Games

PATRIOTS IMPROVE TO 18-4 ALL-TIME IN HOME PLAYOFF GAMES
New England improved its all-time home playoff record to 18-4 (.818), which is the second best home playoff record in NFL history among teams that have played at least 10 home playoff games (Seattle, 11-2, .846).

ADDITIONAL TEAM NOTES

  • The Patriots are now 14-3 all-time in home playoff games played at Gillette Stadium since the facility opened in 2002.
  • The Patriots have now advanced in the playoffs 11 times in the 13 seasons in which they have qualified for the postseason with Bill Belichick as head coach.
  • New England played in its 37th playoff game since Robert Kraft purchased the team in 1994, which is the most in the NFL over that span (Green Bay, 32).
  • New England's 25 playoff wins since Robert Kraft purchased the team in 1994 are the most in the NFL over that span (Pittsburgh, 18).
  • The Patriots are now 26-2 at home over last 3 seasons (regular season and playoffs) and have won 5 straight Divisional Playoff games.

INDIVIDUAL NOTES  

BELICHICK TIES LANDRY WITH 10 APPEARANCE IN CONFERENCE TITLE GAME
Bill Belichick will coach in his 10th conference championship game as head coach, tied with Tom Landry for the most conference championships by a head coach. 
Head Coach    Conf. Champ. Appearances
Tom Landry    10
Bill Belichick    10
Don Shula    7
Chuck Noll    7

BELICHICK COACHED IN HIS 13th DIV. PLAYOFF GAME; 2D MOST IN NFL HISTORY
Bill Belichick coached in his 13th Divisional Playoff Game, tied with Tom Landry for the second-most Divisional Playoff Games in NFL history (Don Shula, 14). Belichick has coached in 12 Divisional Playoff Games as head coach of the Patriots. 
Most Divisional Playoff Games by a Head Coach in NFL History
14 Don Shula
13 Bill Belichick
13 Tom Landry

BELICHICK HAS MOST POSTSEASON WINS IN NFL HISTORY
Belichick added to his postseason record with his 23rd career playoff win as a head coach.  With the win over the Chiefs, Belichick (.719 winning percentage) passed Bill Walsh (.714 winning percentage) for third place on the NFL's all-time playoff head coaching winning percentage list.

MOST POSTSEASON GAMES AS A HEAD COACHHead Coach    GAMES
Tom Landry (Dallas)    36
Don Shula (Baltimore/Miami)    36
Bill Belichick (Cleveland/New England)    32
Chuck Noll (Pittsburgh)    24
Mike Holmgren (Green Bay/Seattle)    24
Joe Gibbs (Washington)    24

BRADY REACHES RECORD-TYING 10th CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIP GAME
Tom Brady has reached his 10th AFC Championship game, tying Gene Upshaw and George Blanda for the most appearances in a conference title game by any player in NFL history. In 14 full seasons as the Patriots' primary starting quarterback (omitting the 2008 season in which Brady started only one game due to injury), Brady has led the Patriots to 10 AFC Championship Games in 14 seasons as the Patriots' primary starting quarterback. 

BRADY TIES ADAM VINATIERI FOR MOST POSTSEASON GAMES
Tom Brady played in his 30th career postseason game, tying Adam Vinatieri for the most postseason games played in NFL history. Brady is slated to become the NFL's all-time leader in playoff games played in the AFC Championship Game. 

TOM BRADY PLAYS IN 12th DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF GAME; ONE BEHIND THE RECORD 13th BY JERRY RICE
Tom Brady played in his 12th Divisional Playoff Game, one behind the NFL record of 13 by Jerry Rice. 

Most Divisional Playoff Games Played
13    Jerry Rice, San Francisco, Oakland 
12    Tom Brady

BRADY ADDS TO NFL RECORD WITH TWO TD PASSES;LEADS THE NFL WITH 55 TOTAL POSTSEASON TOUCHDOWNS
The Patriots are now 26-2 at home over last 3 seasons (regular season and playoffs) and have won 5 straight Divisional Playoff games.
Tom Brady threw for two touchdowns against the Chiefs, adding to his NFL record for most playoff touchdown passes.

BRADY MOVES UP ON ALLTIME POSTSEASON LISTS
Tom Brady improved upon his standing on the NFL's all-time postseason passing lists. With 28 completions against Kansas City, he became the first player in NFL history to complete at least 700 passes in the playoffs.

BRADY EXTENDS NFL RECORD FOR MOST MULTI-TD GAMES IN POSTSEASON
Brady threw two touchdowns against Kansas City to extend his NFL record for the most multi-TD passes in the playoffs with 17. 

MOST MULTI-TD PASSING GAMES IN THE PLAYOFFS – NFL HISTORYTom Brady        17
Brett Favre        15
Joe Montana         14
Terry Bradshaw        10
Dan Marino        10

BRADY HAS NINTH CAREER 300-YARD PASSING GAME IN THE PLAYOFFS
Tom Brady threw for 302 passing yards, marking his ninth career playoff game with 300 or more passing yards. That total is tied with Peyton Manning (9) for the most in NFL history.

MOST 300 YARD GAMES IN POSTSEASON HISTORYPlayer    Team(s)        300-Yard Games
Tom Brady        New England    9
Peyton Manning    Indianapolis/Denver    9
Joe Montana        SF/Kansas City    6
Kurt Warner        STL/Arizona    6
Drew Brees        San Diego/New Orleans    6
Dan Fouts        San Diego    5

BRADY SCORES ON A 1-YARD RUN FOR 6TH CAREER POSTSEASON TD RUN
Tom Brady scored on a 1-yard run in the second quarter for his sixth postseason touchdown run. His six touchdown runs are second in team history in the postseason to the seven rushing touchdowns by LeGarrette Blount. 

Most Rushing Touchdowns in Patriots Postseason History
7 LeGarrette Blount
6 Tom Brady 

Most Rushing Touchdowns by a Quarterback in NFL Postseason History
8 Steve Young 
6 Tom Brady
6 John Elway
6 Steve McNair 
5 Otto Graham   

WINNINGEST COACH AND QB TANDEM IN THE POSTSEASON
Bill Belichick and Tom Brady are the winningest coach and quarterback tandem in the postseason.  

Quarterback/Head Coach        Postseason wins
Bill Belichick/Tom Brady            22
Chuck Noll/Terry Bradshaw            14
Tom Landry/Roger Staubach            11

GRONKOWSKI SETS NFL RECORD FOR POSTSEASON TDS BY A TIGHT END;SETS TEAM RECORD FOR MOST POSTSEASON TOUCHDOWNS
TE Rob Gronkowski scored a pair of touchdowns to raise his career playoff total to 8 touchdowns, setting a new Patriots playoff record for most touchdowns and setting an NFL playoff record for most touchdowns by a tight end. Against Kansas City, Gronkowski scored on an 8-yard touchdown pass in the first quarter for his seventh postseason touchdown, and later scored on a 16-yard reception in the third quarter for his eighth postseason touchdown.

Most Postseason Touchdowns by a Tight End
Player            TDS
Rob Gronkowski    8
Dave Casper        7
Vernon Davis        7
Jay Novacek        6
Keith Jackson        6

Most Postseason Touchdowns in Patriots History
8 Rob Gronkowski 
7 LeGarrette Blount 
7 David Givens
6 Tom Brady 
5 Deion Branch
5 Curtis Martin

GRONKOWSKI HAS SCORED IN FOUR STRAIGHT POSTSEASON GAMES
Rob Gronkowski has scored in four straight postseason games after scoring in all three in 2014 and two against Kansas City. 

GRONKOWSKI HAS SECOND MULTI-TD POSTSEASON GAME.
Gronkowski scored on an 8-yard touchdown pass in the first quarter and a 16-yard touchdown in the third quarter. It is his second NFL postseason game with at least two touchdowns. He had three touchdowns in a Divisional Playoff game against Denver on Jan. 14, 2012. 

JULIAN EDELMAN TIES CAREER PLAYOFF HIGH WITH 10 CATCHES
Julian Edelman had 10 receptions for 100 yards against the Chiefs. The 10 catches tie Edelman's playoff career high, as he also achieved the feat on Jan. 19, 2014, in the AFC Championship Game at Denver. The 100-yard receiving game was Edelman's second career 100-yard game in the playoffs, joining his 109-yard output in Super Bowl XLIX against Seattle on February 1, 2015. Edelman has now had at least eight receptions in five consecutive playoff games in which he has played.

STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI HAS MOST POSTSEASON POINTS IN TEAM HISTORY
Stephen Gostkowski first quarter extra point pushed him past Adam Vinatieri (117) into the team lead for most postseason points. Gostkowski finished the game with 126 career playoff points, establishing a new Patriots record. 

Patriots with 100 or More Points in the Postseason
Stephen Gostkowski (126 – 22 FGs, 60 PATs)
Adam Vinatieri (117 points – 26 FGs, 39 PATs)

Most Kicking Points in the Postseason / NFL History
1.Adam Vinatieri        234
2.David Akers            175
3.Gary Anderson        153
4.Stephen Gostkowski    126
5.George Blanda        115
6.Matt Stover            106
7.Matt Bahr            103

Most Field Goals in Patriots Postseason History
26 Adam Vinatieri (17 games)
22 Stephen Gostkowski (18 games) 

WR KESHAWN MARTIN SETS CAREER-HIGH WITH A 42-YARD RECEPTION
WR Keshawn Martin connected with Tom Brady on a 42-yard reception in the second quarter for the longest reception of his career. His previous best was a 39-yard reception from Tom Brady at Indianapolis on Oct. 18, 2015. 

ADDITIONAL PLAYER NOTES

Patriots WR Julian Edelman (24 receiving yards) and TE Rob Gronkowski (43 receiving yards) combined for 67 of the Patriots' 80 scrimmage yards on New England's game-opening touchdown drive that ended in Gronkowski's 8-yard scoring catch.

Patriots DL Chandler Jones forced a fumble by Kansas City RB Knile Davis on the Chiefs' first drive of the second half, and LB Dont'a Hightower recovered the loose ball to give the Patriots possession with a 14-6 lead and setting up a 5-play, 69-yard drive that ended in a 16-yard touchdown pass from Tom Brady to Rob Gronkowski that gave New England a 21-6 lead.  Jones forced four fumbles in the 2015 regular season, three of which were recovered by the Patriots.

Patriots DL Chandler Jones sacked Kansas City QB Alex Smith for a 3-yard loss on third down in the fourth quarter with the Patriots holding a 24-13 lead, forcing a Chiefs punt on the next play.

Patriots DL Akiem Hicks fought through the Chiefs' offensive line on third-and-6 from the Chiefs 16-yard line in the first quarter, helping to force Kansas City QB Alex Smith to throw the ball away as the Chiefs settled for a field goal to cut the New England lead to 7-3.

Patriots CB Malcolm Butler stopped Chiefs TE Travis Kelce for a 2-yard loss on first down in the second quarter, kicking off a three-and-out for the Patriots defense to maintain a 7-3 lead after Kansas City had gained possession at the Patriots' 36-yard line following a punt return.

Patriots CB Justin Coleman broke up an Alex Smith pass intended for WR Chris Conley on third down in the red zone in the third quarter.

Patriots DL Rob Ninkovich ran Chiefs QB Alex Smith out of bounds for a 3-yard loss on a rush in the first quarter.

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