As the AFC championship game approaches, many Steelers affected by the flu

As the AFC championship game approaches, many Steelers affected by the flu

The Patriots, who have won nine in a row, are early 3-point favorites heading to face Atlanta in two weeks in Houston, seeking their fifth National Football League title with Brady at quarterback and Bill Belichick as coach. It adds to his season total of 158.9 scrimmage yards per game, the 3rd most in National Football League history after what was a sour start to the year through suspension. This marks the third straight playoff meeting that came in the AFC title game, with New England winning in Pittsburgh, 41-27 during the 2004 season and 24-17 during the 2001 campaign. In this case, Tom Brady (of course) threw for 384 yards and three touchdowns, but it was receiver Chris Hogan who had a huge performance, matching Jones' number for the Falcons with nine catches for 180 yards and a pair of touchdowns, including one on a nifty flea-flicker.

The Steelers are 5-0 in rematch games this season and they'll have to go 6-for-6 if they want to get to Super Bowl LI. This, despite the presence of Le'Veon Bell and Antonio Brown who are known to be "quick strike threats".

Soon after, tight end Martellus Bennett was boogeying with the cheerleaders, pompoms in hand, and owner Robert Kraft was accepting the Lamar Hunt Trophy. They also rushed three defenders for a good chunk of the game.

Brown apologized hours later, but by then, everybody and their brother had weighed in - including Patriots players willing to go on the record.

The Internet wanted to know: What was Brady hiding under that jacket? The Patriots have won three of those matchups, including the last two in the AFC title games in 2005 and 2002 at Heinz Field.

When the Patriots (15-2) have the ball: It always starts with Tom Brady (12) for New England.

As the AFC championship game approaches, many Steelers affected by the flu

The New England Patriots have never been quite the same since, stained by the suspicion of scandal, furious about an investigation and penalties they thought were unfair and unbelievable. But he also showed an inexplicable lack in judgment when he chose to Facebook Live from the Steelers locker room moments after their playoff win over the Chiefs on Sunday night.

"We're not making excuses", Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said, according to ESPN. We've dealt with them. "But injuries are a part of the game".

And there are more records awaiting if the Patriots can win: Brady is now tied with Montana and Terry Bradshaw for the most Super Bowl wins by a quarterback with four. "They are the gold standard, if you will".

Neither Atlanta nor New England is anything close to a historically superior defense this season, but if you had to pick one to save a game for you, it'd definitely be the Patriots' unit.

Also, like the Packers, they have enjoyed consistency at coach and quarterback.

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