AFC Championship: Jacksonville at New England, Sunday, Jan. 21, 3:05ET CBS
"I ain't got too much to say, but make sure you all bring that same energy out next week and the week after,” Jalen Ramsey said in front of Jacksonville fans after the Jaguars win over the Steelers. ”We are going to the Super Bowl, and we're gonna win that bitch. We're gonna win that bitch."
The Jaguars have every right to be confident after putting on two strong performances this playoff season, but the last time they beat the Patriots was in the 1998 playoffs…and that is the only time. The Jags are 1-10 all time against the Pats, 0-7 in New England, and 0-6 in the Brady/Belichick era. They are underdogs to say the least, but the Jaguars aren’t looking to back down against the reigning Super Bowl champs. A win in New England solidifies an amazing turnaround season, from nine straight losing seasons to the Super Bowl.
The Patriots are used to big-game situations. However the Jaguars are not, and the bright lights and cooler temperatures could factor into their performance.
The Patriots will need to prepare for a physical game as the Jaguars ranked number one in the regular season in rushing yards, averaging 141.4 yards per game. Expect the Jags to rely heavily on rookie running back Leonard Fournette, who torched the Steelers last week with 109 yards and 3 touchdowns.
As well as the Jaguars have been playing, it’s tough to pick against the Patriots in the playoffs. Brady is the most successful quarterback in postseason history, taking ownership of just about every statistical category a quarterback can have in the postseason. The most passing yards, touchdowns, and wins in NFL postseason history all belong to Brady, the G.O.A.T.
Jalen Ramsey and the Jaguars will have their hands full this weekend, but expect this to be a hard fought gritty matchup that could very well come down to the end of the game.
Prediction: Patriots 30 Jaguars 24