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AFC Championship Game: Jacksonville Jaguars at New England Patriots

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Who will represent the AFC in Minneapolis?

New England Patriots Practice Photo by Barry Chin/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

In just about thirty minutes, we will kick off the first of today’s two games to determine which teams will take part in the final game of the 2017 NFL season in Minneapolis on the first Sunday in February. As the games rotate every season, this year the AFC will step into the spotlight first.

From Foxborough, Massachusetts, it will be the Jacksonville Jaguars traveling north to take on the New England Patriots in the 2017 AFC Championship Game.

This is the seventh consecutive trip to the AFC Championship Game for the Patriots, as they’ve been there every year since 2011. The Patriots had a bye in the opening round, and then ho-hummed their way to a 35-14 victory over the Tennessee Titans in the Divisional Playoffs last Saturday. There hasn’t been a lot of drama surrounding the Patriots on the field, so they had to create some off the field, with Tom Brady reportedly suffering an injury to his throwing hand that required stitches. Will it affect anything? We’ll have to wait and find out.

The Jaguars, on the other hand, have had an interesting playoff run thus far. They hosted the Buffalo Bills on Wild Card weekend, and fought their way to an ugly 10-3 victory. Last Sunday, they took a trip to Heinz Field to take on the Pittsburgh Steelers, and a game that was expected to be another defensive slugfest turned into a shootout, with the Jaguars walking away with a 45-42 victory over Pittsburgh. Can the Jaguars pull off another upset and complete the feat of knocking off the top two seeds in the AFC en route to Minneapolis?

This one will be aired on your local CBS affiliate, with kickoff scheduled for approximately 2:00 PM Central time.

Enjoy the game, ladies and gentlemen, and we’ll have our Open Thread for the first quarter of today’s main event up and running at around 4:40 PM Central time.