Patriots beat Titans 35-14 to head back to AFC title game

Defensive coordinator Matt Patricia and quarterback #12 Tom Brady talk as the Patriots warm up for practice at Gillette Stadium. Wednesday

What They're Saying: Tennessee Titans

The Patriots will be going to their NFL-record seventh straight conference championship game after their 35-14 drubbing of the Titans Saturday, but honestly, who cares about something everyone knew was going to happen? New England has covered in 10 of its last 11 games as a favorite of 10 or more points because the Patriots step on team's throats when they are better.

A report in ESPN claimed that the relationship between Brady, Belichick and owner Robert Kraft had become strained as a effect of "serious disagreements" between the trio, concerning the quarterback's trainer, body coach and business partner Alex Guerrero, the long-term plan at quarterback and the trade of Jimmy Garoppolo to the San Francisco 49ers - as well as the veteran head coach's style. But Brady says he's never doubted his team's ability to compartmentalize potential distractions. "They got a bye week, so they're probably feeling really confident". I was talking a lot of trash, and they were talking a lot of trash to me. "That's fine", he said. "Very proud, there were a lot of good things we did this year". So it's easy for people to overlook us. The Patriots have the AGC's best record at 13-3 and will be hosting a Titans team who is 10-7 on the year but just 4-5 on the road this year. So they will ask Foles to air the ball, and cross their fingers they get the 2013 version. However, they managed just 159 yards the rest of the way as the Patriots' defence kept the Tennessee ground game in check.

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The Ducks made 7 of 9 free throws overall in the first eight minutes of the second half, when UA committed eight fouls. Despite the injury, Holder returned to the game shortly after, but managed to score just two points in the first half.

Ben Roethlisberger had the worst game of his career in that October loss to the Jags.

The Titans got off to a nice start when Corey Davis beat Malcolm Butler to the end zone for a 15-yard, left-handed grab and 7-0 lead in the first quarter, though they lost right tackle Jack Conklin to a knee injury during the drive.

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"When it comes down to it, it's all about us", Mariota said. "Divisional round, and I'm glad we earned the chance to be here [with a home game] to do it and we've just got to go take care of business". He's hasn't played in an National Football League game since that season. He finished with 12 carries for 28 yards, which was nine yards less than Mariota's rushing total. With DeMarco Murray sidelined, Henry was the every down back and he thrived in the role. Running backs James White, Mike Gillislee and Rex Burkhead all missed time at some point. Linebackers Brian Orakpo (seven) and Wesley Woodyard (five) give the Titans a variety of options to attack Brady, not counting backup linebacker Erik Walden (four). Unfortunately, this is the New England Patriots.

The Patriots will be playing with a chip on their shoulder. Gronk easily outmuscled first-team All-Pro Byard for the score to cap the blowout, which was only massaged by a late Davis touchdown. It doesn't help that this game is in Foxboro where the crowd will make things more hard for the Titans. Brady vs LeBeau in the offense defense battle.

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The 66-year-old is now scheduled to leave the company in 2021, the fourth time the company postponed his planned retirement date. Facebook live-streamed 15 college-football games in 2017 in a deal with Stadium, a digital sports broadcaster.

Both Kraft and Belichick responded "absolutely" to questions of whether the coach will be back for the 2018 season. "Throughout this entire season, we didn't play a complete game of football".

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