The Houston Texans bid to exact revenge on New England for a regular season blow out came up short Sunday as the Patriots won 41-28 to advance to the AFC Divisional Championship with Baltimore.
The Texans put up more of a fight, but still could not slow down Tom Brady and the Patriots' dynamic offense.
"We must have had five third and tens in the first half, and they had them too and they made them and we didn't. They made some great plays and when you get in this environment, you get in games like this, you've got to step up and make those types of plays. I think we had our opportunities," said Houston Head Coach Gary Kubiak.
"It wasn't perfect. There are certainly a lot of things we can do better but it was a good win," said Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick. I'm happy for the players. I think they really earned it. They had a good week of practice, thought they really did a good job of preparing for this game and it was good to see us make enough plays here to win."
"We've got a lot of tough guys, mentally tough guys. Whatever happens, like what happened on the first play of the game, you've got to overcome it. We made some key plays when we needed to. Shane made them. Wes made them. Brandon made them. So it was a great effort. The offensive line was awesome as usual," said Pats QB Tom Brady.
In the second Divisional Playoff game of the day, the Atlanta Falcons survived a late onslaught from the Seattle Seahawks to win their first playoff game in four tries, 30-28, with a 49-yard field goal by Matt Bryant with 13 seconds remaining. The Falcons will host San Francisco for the NFC Division Championship.