Derek Carr broke his leg in Week 16, so I don’t believe that it is entirely necessary to win in Miami. With Matt McGloin at the helm, it's hard to imagine Oakland beating Denver on New Year's Day. And even if they pull that off, it's even harder to imagine them getting through anyone in the divisional round of the playoffs. Therefore, the Patriots needing to go to Oakland for the AFC championship game is unlikely at best. So what’s the point of Bill Belichick playing Brady, Hogan, Edelman, Bennett, and Blount?
Tom Brady has started 31 career playoff games. Out of those 31 games, 7 have been on the road. And out of those 7, he has lost 4 of them. Therefore, why in the world would you even think about running the risk of playing a playoff game anywhere except for Gillette Stadium? Brady’s 15-3 in 18 playoff games in Foxboro. Not to mention, he’s won 7 of his last 8. If Bill Belichick and Tom Brady are smart, this is how they’ll see it. Maybe if TB12 can light up the Dolphins the same way Jimmy Garoppolo did in the first half of Week 2, we’ll see Tom spend the second half on the bench for the second straight week and the Patriots can get the best of both worlds. And is there anything better than the Patriots clinching home field and we getting to listen to the commentators announce that “the road to the Super Bowl will go through Foxboro”? Yeah, I didn’t think so.