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Game Notes: Patriots advance to seventh straight conference championship game

 

TEAM NOTES 

 
• Patriots advance to seventh straight conference championship game.
• Patriots set NFL record by advancing in the postseason for the seventh straight season.
• Patriots win 15th Divisional Playoff Game. 
• Fourth straight playoff game with 30 points. 
 
PATRIOTS EXTEND RECORD TO SEVEN STRAIGHT AFC TITLE GAMES
The Patriots have advanced to the AFC Championship Game for the seventh straight season, extending their NFL record for most consecutive conference championship game appearances.
 
PATRIOTS ADVANCE TO 14TH AFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME OVERALL 
The Patriots advance to their 14th AFC Championship Game, tied with Dallas for the third most in NFL history. The Patriots are 9-4 in AFC Championship Games, including a 6-1 record at home and a 5-1 record at Gillette Stadium.
 
MOST APPEARANCES IN CONF. CHAMPIONSHIP GAME
Pittsburgh 16
San Francisco 15
New England 14
Dallas 14
Oakland 11
Denver 10
Los Angeles Rams 9
 
PATRIOTS SET NFL RECORD BY ADVANCING IN THE POSTSEASON FOR 7TH STRAIGHT SEASON
The Patriots have now advanced in the postseason for seven straight seasons (2011-2017) to move past the Dallas Cowboys (6 from 1991-1996) for the most consecutive seasons advancing in the postseason.
 
MOST CONSEUCTIVE SEASONS, PARTICIPATING IN A POSTSEASON GAME
The Patriots have played at least one postseason game in nine straight seasons, to tie Dallas (1975-93) and Indianapolis (2002-10) for the most consecutive seasons participating in a postseason game.
 
PATRIOTS HOST A DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF GAME FOR 8TH STRAIGHT SEASON
The Patriots added to their NFL record by hosting a Divisional Playoff game for the eighth straight season (2010-2017). Miami is next with five straight home Divisional Playoff games (1981-1985). 
 
PATRIOTS WIN DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF GAME FOR 15TH TIME
With the win, the Patriots earned their 15th Divisional Playoff game victory, tying San Francisco (15) for second place behind Pittsburgh (16).
 
PATRIOTS MOVE UP ON ALL-TIME PLAYOFF WINS 
The Patriots won their 33rd playoff game and need one more win to tie Dallas and Green Bay for the second-most postseason wins. 
 
PATRIOTS SCORE 30 IN FOURTH STRAIGHT POSTSEASON GAME
The Patriots scored 30 points for the fourth straight postseason game after scoring 30 points in all three postseason games in 2016 and now the 35-14 win vs. Tennessee. 
 
THE PATRIOTS SCORE 21 POINTS IN A QUARTER FOR THE THIRD TIME IN THE POSTSEASON
The Patriots scored 21 points in the second quarter. It is the third time that they have scored 21 points in a quarter in the postseason. They scored 21 points in the third quarter of the 2014 AFC Championship Game vs. Indianapolis in Jan. 18, 2015 and 21 points in the second quarter in the 2011 AFC Divisional Playoff Game vs. Denver on Jan. 14, 2012. 
 
PATRIOTS REGISTER 30 FIRST DOWNS 
The Patriots registered 31 first downs, marking the third time in team history that the Patriots have recorded at least 30 first downs in a postseason game. The Patriots had 37 first downs vs. Atlanta in Super Bowl LI and 31 vs Denver on Jan. 14, 2012 in the AFC Divisional Playoff Game. 
 
PATRIOTS SET POSTSEASON MARK WITH EIGHT SACKS 
The Patriots defense set a team postseason record with eight sacks against Tennessee. The previous record was six sacks vs. Jacksonville on Jan. 7, 2006. The eight postseason sacks are tied for the second-most in a postseason game. Four teams share the record with nine sacks in a postseason game. Since 2001, the Patriots are 37-1 when they have five or more sacks in a game. Their only loss was at Pittsburgh in 2011.  
 

INDIVIDUAL NOTES  

 
BELICHICK ADVANCES IN THE POSTSEASON FOR SEVENTH STRAIGHT SEASON 
Belichick added to his NFL record by leading the Patriots to advancement in the playoffs for the seventh straight season (2011-17), the most in NFL history. Belichick (2003-07), John Harbaugh (2008-12), Mike Holmgren (1993-97), John Madden (1973-77) and Andy Reid (2000-04) won a playoff game in five consecutive seasons.
 
BELICHICK WILL COACH IN HIS 12TH CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIP GAME   
Bill Belichick will coach in his 12th conference championship game as head coach, the most in NFL history.  
 
BELICHICK COACHED IN HIS 15th DIV. PLAYOFF GAME; MOST BY A HEAD COACH  
Bill Belichick coached in his 15th Divisional Playoff Game, passing Don Shula for the most Divisional Playoff Games coached in NFL history. 
Most Divisional Playoff Games by a Head Coach in NFL History
15 Bill Belichick
14 Don Shula
13 Tom Landry
 
BELICHICK HAS COACHED IN MOST POSTSEASON GAMES 
Bill Belichick coached in his 37th postseason game to surpass Tom Landry and Don Shula for the most postseason games as a head coach. His 27 postseason wins are the most postseason wins among all NFL coaches. Tom Landry is second with 20 postseason victories. 
 
TOM BRADY PLAYS IN 14th DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF GAME; 
THE MOST DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF GAMES IN NFL HISTORY 
Tom Brady played in his 14th Divisional Playoff Game, passing Jerry Rice for the most Divisional Playoff Game appearances.  
 
Most Divisional Playoff Games Played
14 Tom Brady
13 Jerry Rice, San Francisco, Oakland 
 
BRADY REACHES RECORD 12 CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIP GAME
Tom Brady has reached his 12th AFC Championship Game, the most in NFL history. Gene Upshaw and George Blanda are second with 10 appearances in a conference title game. In 16 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 12 AFC Championship Games.
 
BRADY NEARING THE TOP FOR MOST WINS AMONG ALL NFL PLAYERS
Tom Brady has the most wins by an NFL quarterback with 222 overall career wins. His 222 wins are the second-most wins all-time by an NFL player, behind the 225 wins by Adam Vinatieri. 
 
BRADY EXTENDS NFL RECORD FOR MOST MULTI-TD GAMES IN POSTSEASON
Brady threw three touchdowns against Tennessee to extend his NFL record for the most multi-TD passes in the playoffs with 21. Brady has thrown at least two touchdown passes in four straight postseason games. 
 
MOST MULTI-TD PASSING GAMES IN THE PLAYOFFS – NFL HISTORY
Tom Brady 21
Brett Favre 15
Joe Montana 14
Aaron Rodgers 12
Terry Bradshaw 10
Dan Marino 10
Peyton Manning 10
 
BRADY HAS 13TH CAREER 300-YARD PASSING GAME IN THE PLAYOFFS;
Tom Brady threw for 337 yards to extend his NFL record to 13 career 300-yard games in the postseason. 
 
BRADY MOVES PAST MONTANA WITH 10TH 3-TD POSTSEASON GAME
Brady threw three touchdowns against Tennessee and now has 10 career playoff games with three or more passing touchdowns, passing Joe Montana (9) for the most in the Super Bowl era. 
 
BRADY PASSES BRETT FAVRE FOR THE SECOND MOST TDS ALL-TIME
QB Tom Brady added three touchdown passes to move past Brett Favre (552) for the second-most touchdowns passes all-time with 554 (488 in the regular season and 66 in the postseason). Peyton Manning has the most all-time touchdown passes with 579 (539 in the regular season and 40 in the postseason). Brady’s 66 postseason touchdowns are the most in NFL history. Joe Montana is second with 45 postseason touchdowns. 
 
BRADY HAD OVER 30 COMPLETIONS IN A POSTSEASON GAME FOR 7TH TIME
Brady had 35 completions against Tennessee and has now completed at least 30 passes in a postseason game seven times. 
 
WINNINGEST COACH AND QB TANDEM IN THE POSTSEASON
Bill Belichick and Tom Brady are the winningest coach and quarterback tandem in the postseason. Belichick and Brady have the most Super Bowl appearances (7) and Super Bowl wins (5). Their five championships match the combination of Vince Lombardi and Bart Starr, who also won five championships (two Super Bowls and three NFL Championships). 
 
JAMES WHITE HAS SECOND STRAIGHT POSTSEASON GAME WITH AT LEAST TWO SCORES
RB James White scored on 5-yard touchdown pass and a 6-yard run in the second quarter. It is his second straight postseason game with at least two touchdowns. He scored three touchdowns (2 rushing and 1 receiving) in Super Bowl LI. He joins RB LeGarrette Blount and TE Rob Gronkowski as the only Patriots players with two multi-score games in the postseason. 
 
DION LEWIS GOES OVER 100 SCRIMMAGE YARDS
RB Dion Lewis had 141 yards from scrimmage (62 yards rushing and 79 yards receiving). The Patriots are 7-0 when Lewis gains 100 yards or more from scrimmage. 
 
LEWIS FINISHED CAREER-HIGH NINE RECEPTIONS 
Lewis finished with nine receptions for 79 yards, the most receptions he has had in a game. His previous best was eight receptions at Dallas on Oct. 11, 2015. 
 
GRONKOWSKI SCORES HIS 10TH POSTSEASON TOUCHDOWN
TE Rob Gronkowski scored on a 4-yard touchdown pass from Tom Brady in the fourth quarter for his 10th postseason touchdown reception. Only two players in NFL history have more receiving touchdowns than Gronkowski, Jerry Rice with 22 and John Stallworth with 12. 
 
JAMES WHITE HAS SECOND STRAIGHT POSTSEASON GAME WITH AT LEAST TWO SCORES
RB James White scored on 5-yard touchdown pass and a 6-yard run in the second quarter. It is his second straight postseason game with at least two touchdowns. He scored three touchdowns (2 rushing and 1 receiving) in Super Bowl LI. He joins RB LeGarrette Blount and TE Rob Gronkowski as the only Patriots players with two multi-score games in the postseason.
 
GRONKOWSKI MOVES UP ON THE ALL-TIME LIST
Gronkowski finished with six receptions for 81 yards to move past Shannon Sharpe and Keith Jackson into second place all-time in postseason receiving yards for a tight end with 835 yards, behind only Dallas Clark (847).
 
WR DANNY AMENDOLA SETS POSTSEASON CAREER HIGHS 
WR Danny Amendola set postseason career-highs with 11 receptions for 112 yards. His previous best in the postseason was eight receptions for 78 yards in Super Bowl LI. It is the 11th time the Patriots have had a player finish with 10 receptions in a postseason game and the 26th 100-yard game in the postseason for the Patriots. 
 
GOSTKWOSKI HAS NOW SCORED IN 23 STRAIGHT POSTSEASON GAMES 
K Stephen Gostkowski has now kicked at least one point in 23 straight postseason games, third all-time in NFL postseason history. 
 
RB BRANDON BOLDEN SCORES FIRST POSTSEASON TOUCHDOWN;
SCORES HIS FIRST TD OF THE 2017 SEASON 
RB Brandon Bolden scored his first postseason touchdown and his first touchdown of the 2017 season on a 2-yard run in the third quarter. It is his first touchdown overall since he scored on a 63-yard touchdown reception at Denver on Nov. 29, 2015. 
 
DL RICKY JEAN FRANCOIS RECORDS FIRST SACK AS A PATRIOT
DL Ricky Jean Francois dropped Titans QB Marcus Mariota for an 8-yard loss in the third quarter for his first sack as a member of the Patriots. 
 
DL GENEO GRISSOM HAS FIRST CAREER TWO-SACK GAME
DL Geneo Grissom registered his first career two-sack game.
 
DL DEATRICH WISE, JR. HAD FIRST CAREER TWO-SACK GAME
Rookie DL Deatrich Wise, Jr. had his first NFL two-sack game. 

LINEUP NOTES 

 
• DL Adam Butler, WR Brandin Cooks, CB Stephon Gilmore, LB Nicholas Grigsby, TE Jacob Hollister, DL Eric Lee, OL LaAdrian Waddle and DL Deatrich Wise, Jr. all made their postseason debut. Cooks, Gilmore, Lee and Waddle were in the starting lineup. 
• WR Chris Hogan returned to action after missing the final three games due to injury and was in the starting lineup. His only reception was a 4-yard touchdown reception in the second quarter. 
• RB James White returned to action after missing the last two regular season games due to injury. 
 

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