Originally written on NESN.com  |  Last updated 11/5/14

NEW ORLEANS - NOVEMBER 30: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates after Laurence Maroney scored a 2-yard rushing touchdown in the third quarter against the New Orleans Saints at Louisana Superdome on November 30, 2009 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
The Patriots are still holding out hope for a first-round bye as they head toward the postseason, but all likelihood points toward Tom Brady and company hosting a game on wild card weekend. Unless the Texans or Broncos fall flat on their faces this weekend — which is possible considering Houston’s visit to Indianapolis and Denver’s struggles with Kansas City earlier this season — then there will be football at Gillette Stadium next weekend. So, that means either the Cincinnati Bengals or Indianapolis Colts will be making the trip to New England. Both teams clinched their playoff berths with wins last Sunday and are on scorching-hot streaks right now. The Bengals have won six of their past seven, including a nail-biting victory over the division rival Steelers on Sunday in a game that had a playoff feel to it. Andy Dalton has played ball lately, scoring 15 total touchdowns (12 passing, three rushing) and throwing five interceptions over their past seven games. Meanwhile, the Cincy defense has really kicked it up a notch, allowing just 12 points per game over that seven-game stretch. As for the Colts, they’ve pulled out four of their past five games and eight of their past 10. Andrew Luck looks like Rookie of the Year royalty, Reggie Wayne has seen a youthful resurgence and the return of head coach Chuck Pagano from leukemia can only serve to further inspire this team. So, if the Patriots must play a game in New England next weekend, who would you rather see on the other sideline? Take Our Poll Have a question for Luke Hughes? Send it to him via Twitter at @LukeFHughes or send it here.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

DeMarco Murray: I don't pay attention to being replaced

Bucs believed to be going for Marcus Mariota with No. 1 pick

Report: Wrigley Field renovation causing massive rat problem

Rex Ryan praises Patriots, calls Deflategate 'unfortunate'

Brady hopes Peyton Manning comes back next season

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Thibodeau’s relationship with Bulls 'beyond repair'

Joe Montana pins blame for Deflategate on Tom Brady

NFLPA boss: No Deflategate interviews until after SB

Blandino: Deflategate no sting; PSI in footballs not logged in

Aaron Hernandez’s DNA found on bullet casing, joint near body

Thomas upset he was tested for PEDs over health statement

WATCH: Porn sounds played during Predators broadcast

Five worst teams to win a Super Bowl

Matt Damon, Ben Affleck defend Patriots on Kimmel

Watch: John Oliver tackles the Super Bowl

The Washington Redskins and their forgotten dynasty

WATCH: Katy Perry cracks Deflategate, Marshawn jokes

Devon and Leah Still write a book for kids fighting cancer

Five potential heroes of Super Bowl XLIX

WATCH: Timberwolves throw shade at Kevin Love in promo

Tom Izzo: 'The Twitter' may have affected team's confidence

Measles outbreak hits Arizona days before Super Bowl

Proposed pace-of-play rule changes, by the numbers

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Five potential Super Bowl XLIX heroes

Rex Ryan downplays Deflategate

Brady hopes Manning comes back

The worst Super Bowl commercials of all-time

SB anthem, halftime performers through the years

Super Bowl should smash TV records

Super Bowl records unlikely to fall

15 amazing Super Bowl XLIX stats

Teammate: Manziel not a joke

Ten most underrated SB performances

Knicks ‘in play’ for Kevin Durant?

Ex-QB: Everyone deflates footballs

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.