NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS(16-0) vsJACKSONVILLE JAGUARS* (12-5)
*Saturday, January 12, 2008 -- Gillette Stadium (68,756) -- 8:00 p.m. EST
The Patriots will host the Jacksonville Jaguars in a prime-time playoff matchup on Saturday night. New England will face Jacksonville in the playoffs for the second time in three seasons, having defeated the Jaguars in a first-round playoff game following the 2005 season.
The Patriots have won nine consecutive home playoff games and have not lost at home in the playoffs since Dec. 31, 1978. New England's nine consecutive home playoff victories are tied for the second longest streak in NFL history. The Patriots will play in their 22nd playoff game since Robert Kraft purchased the team in 1994, a total that stands as the highest in the league over that period.
The 2007 Patriots became the fourth team in the NFL's 88-season history to complete an undefeated and untied regular season. Along the way, they set records for most points (589) and most touchdowns (75) by any team since the league was founded in 1920. But with the regular season in the rear view mirror, the Patriots will turn all of their focus to their playoff game against Jacksonville on Saturday night.
PERFECT REGULAR SEASON
The 2007 Patriots are the fourth NFL team to win all of their regular season games since the league was founded in 1920. The Patriots are the first team to accomplish the feat since the NFL season expanded from 14 games to 16 games in 1978. New England joins the 1972 Miami Dolphins as the only teams to accomplish the feat since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger.
TELEVISION: The game will be broadcast by CBS and can be seen in Boston on WBZ-TV Channel 4.Jim Nantz will handle play-by-play duties with Phil Simms providing analysis.
RADIO: WBCN 104.1 FM is the flagship station for the Patriots Rock Radio Network. A complete listing of the network's 33 stations can befound here. Play-by-play broadcaster Gil Santos is in his 31st season as the voice of the Patriots and will call the action along with Patriots Hall of Famer Gino Cappelletti. Santos and Cappelletti are celebrating their 24th season as a tandem.
NATIONAL RADIO: The game will be broadcast to a national radio audience by Westwood One. Dick Enberg will handle play-by-play and Dennis Greenwill provide analysis.John Dockery will report from the sidelines.
SERIES HISTORYThe Patriots and Jaguars will meet for the eighth time overall and for the fourth time in the playoffs. The teams last clashed in the playoffs following the 2005 season, when the Patriots claimed a 28-3 win at Gillette Stadium and set an NFL record with their 10th consecutive playoff victory. The Patriots have won all four of the regularseason games between the clubs, including a 24-21 victory in Jacksonville on Dec. 24, 2006. The Jaguars will visit Foxborough for the fifth time, with the Patriots having won all four previous games in New England, including both playoff contests. Three of the seven previous games between the teams have been playoff games, including the 1996 AFC Championship Game at Foxboro Stadium. In that contest, the Patriots beat the Jaguars 20-6 to advance to Super Bowl XXXI. The Jaguars claimed a 25-10 win in the 1998 wild card playoffs. In addition to their regular season and playoff games, the teams have met once in preseason play, with the Jaguars claiming a 31-0 victory in the final game of the 2004 preseason on Sept. 2, 2004.
PATRIOTS IN DIVISIONAL PLAYOFFS
The Patriots have compiled a 7-5 all-time record in divisional playoff games. The Patriots have won five of their last seven divisional round games and have been victorious in six of their last nine such contests.
- This week's game will feature the NFL's highest-scoring teams over the second half of the regular season. In their last eight regular-season games, the Patriots scored 258 points, while the Jaguars scored 256.
- This week's game will be the Patriots' fifth prime-time playoff game since the 2001 season. New England holds a 3-1 record in its previous four prime-time playoff contests.
- In winning six of seven total contests in the series, the Patriots have won 85.7 percent of their games against the Jaguars. The only other teams against which the Patriots have won at least 80 percent of their games are the Baltimore Ravens (4-0) and Houston Texans (2-0).
- The Jaguars are one of just four teams against which the Patriots own an undefeated home record (4-0). The Patriots are 2-0 at home against Baltimore, 3-0 against Chicago and 1- 0 against Houston.
- The Patriots have defeated the Jaguars twice in the playoffs (1996 and 2005). Jacksonville is one of six teams against which the Patriots own multiple playoff wins. The others are Pittsburgh (3), Indianapolis (2), Miami (2), N.Y. Jets (2), and the Oakland/L.A. Raiders (2). CONNECTIONS
- Patriots tight end Kyle Brady played for the Jaguars for eight seasons from 1999-2006. While with Jacksonville, he caught 241 passes for 2,500 yards. His career receiving yardage total ranks third on Jacksonville's career list and his reception total ranks fourth in Jaguars history.
- Patriots head coachBill Belichickand Jaguars cornerback Aaron Glenn worked together with the New York Jets for three seasons from 1997-99, during which time Belichick was the Jets' assistant head coach/secondary and Glenn was a Pro Bowl cornerback.
- Patriots wide receivers Donte' Stallworth and Kelley Washington, Patriots defensive lineman Rashad Moore and Jaguars defensive tackle John Henderson were teammates at the University of Tennessee.
- Jaguars assistant head coach/tight ends Mike Tice was Patriots wide receiver Randy Moss's head coach with the Minnesota Vikings from 2002-04.
- Jaguars defensive line coach Ray Hamilton played on the Patriots defensive line from 1973 to 1981 where he started a team-record 110 consecutive games and racked up 54 sacks to place him fifth on the team's all-time list. He later had two coaching tenures with the Patriots, as a defensive line assistant (1985-89) and a defensive line coach (1997-99).
- Patriots quarterback Matt Cassel played at the University of Southern California while Jaguars running backs coach Kennedy Pola (2000-03) served on the Trojans coaching staff.
- Patriots running backs coach Ivan Fears, strength and conditioning coach Mike Woicik and Jaguars assistant head coach Dave Campo were on the same staff at Syracuse from 1984-86.
- Jaguars linebackers coach Mark Duffner served as head coach at Holy Cross from 1986-91 where he compiled a 60-5- 1 mark that included two 11-0 seasons (1987 and 1991). He was named national coach of the year five times while at Holy Cross and 'New England Coach of the Year' five times. The 1987 Holy Cross team was ranked No. 1 in the nation in Division I-AA by the Associated Press for a period of time. Duffner initially served as defensive coordinator at the school from 1981-1985.
- Patriots head coach Bill Belichick hired Terry McDonough as a scout while Belichick was the head coach of the Cleveland Browns in 1992. McDonough, an Executive Scout with the Jaguars, is a native of Hingham, Mass. He is the son of the late Will McDonough, a longtime sportswriter who covered the Patriots for the Boston Globe.
- Jaguars fullback Montell Owens played at the University of Maine from 2002-05.
- Patriots wide receiver Chad Jackson and Jaguars defensive end Jeremy Mincey were teammates at the University of Florida from 2004-05. Mincey was originally drafted by the Patriots in the sixth round (191st overall) of the 2006 NFL Draft.
- Patriots defensive lineman Jarvis Green (1999-2001) and linebackerEric Alexander(2000-02) played with Jaguars running back LaBrandon Toefield at Louisiana State.
- Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and Jaguars tackle Maurice Williams were four-year teammates at the University of Michigan from 1996-99.
- Patriots wide receivers Jabar Gaffney (2000-01) and Chad Jackson (2003) and Jaguars defensive end Bobby McCray were four-year teammates at the University of Florida from 2000-03.
- Jaguars offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter held the same position at Boston College from 1994-95.
- The Patriots defeated the Philadelphia Eagles, 24-21, in Super Bowl XXXIX at Alltel Stadium in Jacksonville, Fla., on Feb. 6, 2005.