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AFC Championship Pre-Gamin’: Jaguars at Patriots – Lineups, Broadcast Info, Game Thread

Pre-Gamin'

Tom Brady has been the Patriots’ primary starting quarterback for 16 years and has led his team to the AFC Championship Game 11 times. Some quick back-of-the-envelope math shows he is leading his team to the conference title game 68.8 percent of the time.

To put it in perspective, Brady is statistically more likely to take his team to the AFC title game than Mitch Trubisky was to complete a pass in his rookie season.

That’s how good Brady and the Patriots have been in the Brady-Belichick era.

And yet, none of that matters to a Jaguars team that boasts one of the best defenses in football. According to Pro Football Focus, 10 of the 11 starters on Jacksonville’s defense grade out as above average or better. Further, the Jaguars have three “elite” defenders (cornerback Jalen Ramsey, defensive end Calais Campbell, and linebacker Telvin Smith) and two others (defensive tackle Malik Jackson, cornerback A.J. Bouye) at the high quality level. Nearly 50 percent of that defense ranks among the two highest grade classes PFF has. That’s impressive.

Jacksonville allowed Pittsburgh to put up 42 points in the divisional round, which probably has a New England offense coming off a 35-point outburst against Tennessee drooling over the possibilities. But the Jaguars also forced two turnovers, scored a defensive touchdown, and either sacked or hit Ben Roethlisberger nine times. If New England can keep Jacksonville’s relentless defense on its heels, then it could be a long day for a team that has an offense led by quarterback Blake Bortles.

Game Info

Jacksonville Jaguars (10-6, 1st AFC South) at New England Patriots (13-3, 1st AFC East) – 2:05 p.m., CBS-TV (Jim Nantz, Tony Romo, Tracy Wolfson), WSCR-AM 670/Westwood One (Kevin Kugler, Dan Fouts, Ed Werder)

Site: Gilette Stadium, Foxborough, Mass.

Referee: Clete Blakeman

Odds: Patriots (-8), Over/Under 45.5 via Bovada.

Game Thread

Your game thread is down in the comments, so let’s have some good, clean (safe-for-work) fun. And hopefully, we can do this again in the near future.

Coaches

Patriots Bill Belichick (250-118 overall, 27-10 in playoffs) vs. Jaguars Doug Marrone (26-24 overall 2-0 in playoffs)

Starting Quarterbacks

Patriots: Tom Brady: 4,577 passing yards, 32 touchdowns, 8 interceptions, 66.3 completion percentage, 102.8 rating

versus

Jaguars: Blake Bortles: 3,687 passing yards, 21 touchdowns, 13 interceptions, 60.2 completion percentage, 84.7 rating

The Trophy

Patriots Expected Offensive Starters

  • QB Tom Brady
  • RB Dion Lewis
  • RB James White
  • WR Chris Hogan
  • WR Brandin Cooks
  • TE Rob Gronkowski
  • LT Nate Solder
  • LG Joe Thuney
  • C David Andrews
  • RG Shaq Mason
  • RT Cameron Fleming

Patriots Expected Defensive Starters

  • LDE Eric Lee
  • DT Lawrence Guy
  • DT Malcom Brown
  • RDE Trey Flowers
  • LB Kyle Van Noy
  • LB Elandon Roberts
  • RCB Stephon Glmore
  • LCB Malcolm Butler
  • S Patrick Chunk
  • S Devin McCourty
  • S Duron Harmon

Patriots Specialists

  • Stephen Gostkowski (kicker), Ryan Allen (punter, holder), Danny Amendola (punt returns), Dion Lewis, Matthew Slater (kick returns), Joe Cardona (long snapper)

Jaguars Offense Expected Starters:

  • QB Blake Bortles
  • RB Leonard Fournette
  • FB Tommy Bohanon
  • WR Marqise Lee
  • WR Allen Hurns
  • TE Mercedes Lewis
  • LT Cam Robinson
  • LG Patrick Omameh
  • C Brandon Linder
  • RG A.J. Cann
  • RT Jeremy Parnell

Jaguars Defense Expected Starters:

  • DE Yannick Ngakoue
  • NT Abry Jones
  • DT Malik Jackson
  • DE Calais Campbell
  • WLB Telvin Smith
  • MLB Paul Posluszny
  • SLB Myles Jack
  • LCB Jalen Ramsey
  • RCB A.J. Bouye
  • FS Tashaun Gipson
  • SS Barry Church

Jaguars Specialists:

  • Josh Lambo (kicker), Brad Nortman (punter, holder), Jaydon Mickens (punt returner), Corey Grant, Keelan Cole (kick returns), Colin Holba (long snapper

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Luis Medina

Luis is the Lead Writer at The Ten-Yard Line, and you can find him on Twitter at @lcm1986.