Thanks to the Denver Broncos loss to the Cincinnati Bengals on Monday Night Football and their head-to-head loss to the Patriots earlier this season, the New England Patriots at 12-3 have clinched the AFC’s No. 1 seed in the postseason and have home-field advantage in Foxboro throughout the playoffs.
This was the 12th consecutive season where the Patriots finished with double-digit wins under Bill Belichick. The last time they failed to accomplish that feat was 2002 when they finished 9-7 and failed to make the playoffs a year removed from their franchise’s 1st Super Bowl victory.
The New England Patriots during the Brady-Belichick era have finished as the AFC’s No. 1 seed six times: 2003, 2004, 2007, 2010, 2011 and, now, 2014. They are 8-1 at Gillette Stadium in those six seasons with their only loss coming in 2010 to the New York Jets 28-21.