On Pro Football Now, The MMQB editor-in-chief Peter King discusses why he believes New England will defeat Baltimore in their divisional round matchup.



The New England Patriots host the Baltimore Ravens in an AFC Divisional Playoff game on Saturday, Jan. 10, at Gillette Stadium. The Ravens advanced to the second round of the playoffs after a 30-17 victory at Pittsburgh. Baltimore is one of four teams to earn a playoff berth in six of the past seven seasons. In each of their postseason appearances, the Ravens have won at least one playoff game, advancing to at least the Divisional round each time. Of those four teams, only Baltimore (2012) & Green Bay (2010) have won Super Bowls during this stretch.

This week's game will be the 4th postseason meeting between the two teams, including a Wild Card game in 2009 and AFC Championship games in 2011 and 2012.

The Ravens and Patriots have battled three times during postseason play, with Baltimore owning a 2-1 series lead. All three contests have occurred in Foxborough, with Baltimore winning the 2009 Wild Card matchup and the 2012 AFC Championship en route to its Super Bowl XLVII title. New England defeated Baltimore 2011 AFC Championship Game.

The Patriots try to advance to the AFC Championship Game for the fourth straight season, joining Oakland (5-1973-77), Philadelphia (4-2001-04), Buffalo (4-1990-93) and Dallas (4-1970-73 and 1992-95) as the only teams to reach at least four straight conference championship games.

The Patriots finished the 2014 regular season with a 12-4 record and the top seed in the conference, securing home-field advantage throughout the AFC Playoffs. The Patriots have now earned the number one seed five times (2014, 2011, 2010, 2007 and 2003). New England's 12 wins mark the ninth time in franchise history the Patriots have recorded 12 or more victories in the regular season, and it is the ninth time in the last 12 years the Patriots have had at least 12 regular-season wins. The Patriots have won at least 12 games for five straight years dating back to 2010 and finished with a 12-4 regular season record for the third straight year.

The Patriots earned a first-round bye in 2014 and lead the NFL with 10 first-round byes since the current NFL playoff format was instituted in 1990. New England has earned a first-round bye for the fifth consecutive season, becoming the first team to accomplish that feat. Dallas and San Francisco earned four straight byes from 1992 through 1995.


NFL Football News & Analysis [...]

NFL Football [...]


More NFL Football ...

Article: Copyright ©

Why Tom Brady and the Patriots Will Hold Off the Ravens in a Thriller - NFL Playoffs