They dropped two in a row, but the Patriots are hoping to close out the regular season on another winning streak. They are now 12-2 after defeating the lowly Tennessee Titans.
Tom Brady threw for 267 yards on 23-35 passing in the 33-16 victory. He had two touchdowns - one to running back James White and another to tight end Rob Gronkowski.
White led receivers with seven catches on eight targets. He had an impressive 71 receiving yards. wide receiver Brandon LaFell accounted for the most yards with 88 on four catches. Gronkowski, meanwhile, only caught five of the 11 passes that came his way. He did add 54 yards of his own, though.
Wide receiver Danny Amendola made just one catch for three yards. He left in the second quarter with a knee injury.
A bright spot on offense was running back Joey Iosefa, who was promoted from the practice squad to play in his first NFL game after the Pats lost LeGarrette Blount last week. The rookie, drafted in the final round this year by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, ran for 51 yards on 14 carries.
Kicker Stephen Gostkowski missed one field goal attempt, but he was successful in four more.
Despite a lapse that handed tight end Delanie Walker a 57-yard touchdown catch - one of the two catches he made in the game, both for touchdowns - there was a lot to like about the Patriots' defense. New England sacked Tennessee quarterbacks five times in the game, and defensive end Chandler Jones accounted for two.
After rookie quarterback Marcus Mariota, the second pick in this year's draft, like Amendola, went down with a knee injury in the second quarter, Zach Mettenberger took over. Cornerback Malcolm Butler and linebacker Jamie Collins each picked off Mettenberger.
With the victory over the Titans, now 3-11, in hand, New England looks ahead to the New York Jets, who are now in position to get into the playoffs as a wildcard team.