On Saturday, the New England Patriots will host the Tennessee Titans during the divisional playoff round. The two teams are relatively unfamiliar with each other, considering that they have not faced off since the 2015 season – and this might not bode well for the visitors: The Patriots of the Tom Brady/Bill Belichick era are undefeated when not having faced a playoff opponent during the regular season.
13 times the Patriots have played such games, 13 times the Patriots left the field victoriously:
2001: Oakland Raiders (divisional round, 16-13)
2005: Jacksonville Jaguars (wild card round, 28-3)
2006: San Diego Chargers (divisional round, 24-21)
2007: Jacksonville Jaguars (divisional round, 31-20)
2011: Baltimore Ravens (AFC championship, 23-20)
2013: Indianapolis Colts (divisional round, 43-22)
2014: Baltimore Ravens (divisional round, 35-31)
2015: Kansas City Chiefs (divisional round, 27-20)
2016: Atlanta Falcons (Super Bowl LI, 34-28)
For comparison, during playoff games that are rematches of regular season contests, the Brady-Belichick Patriots are a comparatively pedestrian 12-9. There are three potential rematches still possible this season: New England has already played the Pittsburgh Steelers this year as well as the NFC's New Orleans Saints and Atlanta Falcons. The Patriots defeated all three during the regular season, for what it is worth.
Then again, past performance or preparation – or the lack thereof – only has a limited impact on the actual upcoming game.
Meet the Patriots' next opponent: Tennessee Titans
Meet the Patriots' upcoming opponent: The Tennessee Titans.Posted by Pats Pulpit: For New England Patriots News on Wednesday, January 10, 2018