The New England Patriots (12-4) took care of business and beat the Miami Dolphins (7-9). It was an easy 28-0 win. Earlier in the day the Houston Texans (12-4), which had lost 2 of its last 3, lost again. This time it was to the Indianapolis Colts (11-5). The 28-16 loss opened the door for the Pats to get a first round bye in the playoffs and home field for their first game.
It was a solid performance all around for the Patriots, as the offense generated 443 yards, including 276 passing and 167 rushing and 276 passing. Brady was 22 of 36, tossed 2 TDs and did not offer a pick. Wes Welker had 8 receptions for 94 yards and 1 touchdown. TE Rob Gronkowski was back and took down 2 catches for 42 yards and 1 TD. For the first time in a long time, Gronk and Aaron Hernandez played in the same game.
Miami QB Ryan Tannehill had a terrible day. He lost a fumble, tossed an INT and was sacked 7 times. Another way to look at it would be to say that the New England defense had a great day. The defense also notched 8 TFL and 6 PDs.
Pats on Target
It’s great to finish strong when you’re headed into the playoffs as the Pats did this past week. Now they get to sit back and watch the first round as they heal up and do some prep work. The real prep work comes in once they know who they are playing. The Patriots have played well this season and it’s been great to see their defense come into their own. It happened when they went to England and destroyed the St. Louis Rams. That’s when the defense really started to click.
NFL This Week
The first round has Cincinnati at Houston. Normally I’d say Houston wins but the Texans have been playing pretty badly. So I think this one sees the Bengals upset the home team. That game is on Saturday. The other Saturday game offers Minnesota at Green Bay. I like the Vikings in this one despite the fact that the Packers are at home and looking very sound.
On Sunday, it’s Indy at Baltimore. There has been some good stuff happening for the Colts, but I believe the Ravens will prevail in the end. Finally, it’s Seattle and Washington. I’m going with the home team on this one as the Redskins beat the Seahawks.