BOSTON (CBS) — The Patriots were a determined bunch all season, and they’re locked in as they get set to begin their playoff push towards another Super Bowl title.

New England is a heavy favorite heading into Saturday’s AFC Divisional Round game against the Houston Texans, favored by as many as 17 points depending on where you look. So no one is really giving the Texans any chance.

The Boston Herald’s Jeff Howe said last week that the Patriots would come off their postseason bye week and essentially get another free pass, giving Houston no shot at pulling off an upset on Saturday night.

“I guess the Patriots could assume the game starts on Sunday, and maybe they’re a late arrival,” Howe joked on Tuesday’s Toucher & Rich. “The game is going to be a dud and they’ll win this thing by three scores. It would take a catastrophic series of turnovers, similar to that Eagles game last year that they lost at Gillette Stadium, for the Patriots to blow this one. This is as one-sided as a Divisional Round matchup as you’re going to find.”

While fans may be taking the Texans lightly, Patriots players and their coaching staff certainly aren’t. They practiced all last week before getting the weekend off, and many players opted to stay in the area given the weather, afraid they may not get back in time for Monday meetings.

“That kind of shows you how dialed in the Patriots are to making sure they go out and play their best on Saturday. That’s not a good recipe for the Texans,” said Howe. “I have every reason in the world to believe that the Patriots are taking this as serious as they need to be, which means they should handle business accordingly.”

Howe also touched on Josh McDaniels and Matt Patricia interviewing for head coaching jobs over the weekend, and the possibility of them leaving in the offseason:

  1. Jim Freeman says:

    “……..and many players opted to stay in the area given the weather,……..” – what, no boat trips in Miami?????

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