FOXBORO -- Week 17 will be an interesting one. Not just for the Patriots to find out what seed they'll have in the playoffs, but also to find out who they'll be playing.
The assumption would be that at some point this week, somebody might start to look ahead at the potential teams New England could face. Still, this is the Patriots. And that's just not how they do business.
At least, that's what they continue to say. And offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels re-iterated that in a conference call on Monday, saying that all they're doing is preparing for the regular-season finale against the Miami Dolphins.
"I dont think theres any less preparation because this is the second time around against a division opponent," said McDaniels. "This team is a team that theyre obviously a really good defensive team. They have a lot of talented players at all three levels of their defense. We certainly had our hands full in the first game with them and it was a nip and tuck game there most of the way. They created some issues for us, so my whole focus and our whole focus this week is going to be on trying to get our team and our offense to play as well as we can against Miami.
"If theres time to find some extra time at some point later in the week to try to squeeze in a little bit of work on somebody else then thats great, but I know Im going to spend my time trying to get our team ready to go and play against Miami and see if we can put together a good performance. Its always a challenge to play a division opponent the second time this close to one another. You did so many things you wanted to do in the first game and now you have that dilemma: do we change a lot, do we keep it much the same? And theyre going to go through the same things too. They have our complete, total focus this week.
"I think what matters is that we finish out the season the right way and then try to prepare and have a great week of preparation, whomever we play," added McDaniels. "I think our focus is going to be on the Dolphins and whatever we end up doing in the playoffs or what have you, then well find out after Sunday."