- Paul Kuharsky, ESPN Staff Writer
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The Patriots will be heavy favorites over the Texans on Sunday in a divisional round playoff game at Gillette Stadium.
But one game between teams doesn’t always tell us what will happen in a rematch.
The Patriots played about as well as they could and the Texans about as poorly as they could in a 42-14 New England win on Monday Night Football on Dec. 10.
“No, as we all know, I think when you play a team twice during the season, the games are totally different -- they never go the same way,” Bill Belichick told New England media in a conference call today. “We’ll be able to certainly look at some of the matchups individually, guys that faced each in the game. As far as plays and calls and things like that matching up, I’m sure they’ll have some new wrinkles, I’m sure we’ll have some too. It will be totally different.”
We just saw Minnesota and Green Bay play on consecutive weekends with vastly different results.
Both the Patriots and Texans are sure to make mention of the Patriots-Jets scenario from the 2010 season.
New England destroyed New York 45-3 on Dec. 6, 2010. But after a bye, they lost to the Jets in another game at Gillette Stadium, 28-21, in the divisional round of the playoffs.
“I think there’s certainly a lesson there about the game that we play now doesn’t have much to do with the game we played before,” Belichick said. “It’s another example of that. We’ve talked about that many, many times here, before and after the 2010 season. I don’t think it’s anything that wasn’t mentioned until that situation occurred but it’s an example we can point out.
“We talked about that many times before, how other games don’t have anything to do with this game. It stands on its own. That is and always will be the case, but it’s an example to point out how little relevance the previous game with the same team really does have.”
The Texans are certainly hoping that’s the case.