• Patriots not overlooking Texans

    By: Tom Leyden


    FOXBORO - Game-week preparations started Monday in Foxboro as the Patriots get set to face the Texans Saturday night in the AFC Divisional Round. 

    The Texans have never won at Gillette Stadium, entering Saturday's game with an 0-4 record in Foxboro, including a 27-0 loss on September 22. 

    “We don’t need to worry about that," said tackle Nate Solder. "This is a whole different animal here we are playing. They’re a long ways away from where they were before and we know that.”

    The Patriots started Jacoby Brissett under center in Week Three, as Tom Brady was still serving his four-game suspension. Rob Ninkovich also missed the Texans game as he was serving a suspension, as well. 

    Ninkovich today was asked about Texans quarterback Brock Osweiler, who was benched in December, but reclaimed his starting job when his replacement, Tom Savage, suffered a concussion in Week 17. 

    “I think he’s a big guy in the pocket," said Ninkovich. "He can stand tall in there, he can make all the throws, and he’s also athletic so he can get out and extend plays, so as a front you have to do a great job with your pass rush integrity and understand that he’s a good quarterback in the pocket and can make all the throws.”

    The Patriots are heavy favorites entering Saturday's game and playing at home provides more confidence, but cornerback Malcolm Butler doesn't care where the game is being played. 

    "That really doesn’t mean anything," said Butler. "The team that plays the best on that day, no matter where you are, the team that plays the best is going to advance to the next round, so you’ve got to perform well.”

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