Another postseason game, another victory for Tom Brady, who is now the league's all-time winningest QB in the playoff tournament (17). The New England Patriots' star passer helped carry his team past the Houston Texans in Sunday's divisional round.
It was another big-time win by the Brady-Belichick duo, advancing to their second consecutive AFC Championship. With one more victory next weekend, they have a chance to compete in their sixth Super Bowl together.
Greg Knopping of Pats Pulpit alluded to the dominating nature of this New England victory on Sunday:
The final score of this one doesn't really even give justice to exactly how dominating the New England Patriots were in this one. At one point in the fourth quarter, the Patriots held a dominating 25 point lead before moving into a more conservative defense and allowing the Texans to pick up big yardage and points (but on the flip side, burning valuable clock).
The heroes of this game are obvious. Lets highlight a few:
Shane Vereen. With Danny Woodhead going down with a thumb injury on the opening drive, Shane Vereen took over as the Patriots' change of pace back, and was phenomenal. Vereen should nice explosion and made some nice cuts as a runner, but was completely unstoppable as a receiver. He finished with three total touchdowns, two of which were through the air.
Tom Brady. Tom Brady was Tom Terrific yet again in the playoffs. He went 25/40 for 344 yards and three touchdowns. His fourth quarter touchdown to Shane Vereen was one of the prettiest throws of his postseason career.
What stands out most about this win was the contributions from the running backs. Every football fan expects Tom Brady to come out and be "Tom Terrific," however, when the ground game is playing a role, that's another story. The Patriots become a whole new breed of dangerous.
Out of the quarterbacks remaining in the final four, Brady is in a league of his own. Now, coupled with a defensive unit that is playing strong at the point of attack and a versatile stable of backs, the Patriots are just as hot as any other team entering the championship round.