Last week the Dolphins, this week the Bills. The Pats tendency to fall behind big had better end, because whoever they play next may not allow them to get back in the game so easy.
Sunday it seemed like it was that easy, as the Pats came back from a 21-0 deficit to pound the Bills 49-21 to secure home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs.
The win means that the Pats will sit back, watch games next weekend, and then find out who exactly they will play in the divisional round on either January 14th or 15th.
Tom Brady finished the regular season with the second most yards passing in NFL history, 5,235, after throwing for 338. Drew Brees, who last week broke Dan Marino’s record of 5,084 with the Miami Dolphins in 1984, added 389 Sunday for the Saints and ended with 5,486.
Despite not playing their best the past two weeks, the Patriots finished the season with eight straight wins at 13-3.
For the second game in a row, they fell behind early. They beat the Dolphins 27-24 after trailing 17-0 at halftime then rallied after the Bills (6-10) scored touchdowns on their first three possessions, drawing boos from the home fans.
Sunday’s deficit was the Patriots biggest of the season, but they had Brady to lead them back.
A 1-yard run by BenJarvus Green-Ellis and a 39-yard pass to Aaron Hernandez, which put Brady over the 5,000-yard mark, cut the lead to 21-14.
Field goals of 41 and 20 yards by Stephen Gostkowski made it 21-20 and the Patriots went ahead to stay 28-21 on Brady’s 17-yard scoring pass to Gronkowski with 1:32 left in the third quarter and a 2-point conversion run by Danny Woodhead.
They kept rolling with a 3-yard touchdown run by Green-Ellis, a 7-yard scoring pass to Gronkowski with 3:07 left in the game and a 21-yard interception return for another touchdown by Sterling Moore just 12 seconds later.
It was all over, as the Bills were packing their bags and thinking about their vacation plans. For the Pats, it’s rest, and get ready for a Super Bowl run.