Bell Tolls: Patriots' Tom Brady challenged to beat the clock - USA TODAY

Bell Tolls: Patriots' Tom Brady challenged to beat the clock - USA TODAY

It has been nearly a decade since the Patriots quarterback last won a Super Bowl, and at 37 years old he can't bank on too many opportunities to win it all. The clock is ticking, louder than ever. Even with New England playing in its fourth consecutive AFC title game, Brady has been around long enough to know that next season is hardly promised. He will have perhaps New England's best defense in several years. And oh yes, he will have the experience of 15 NFL seasons in his pocket. "At some point, you don't have the experience," Brady said. "It's a game like all the other games," he added. It was the same as last week, so we're fortunate to be in this position. It's hard to do and our team found a way to get there this year, so hopefully we can take advantage of the opportunity. The Patriots almost blew it last week, but survived against the Ravens by becoming the first team in NFL playoff history to overcome two separate 14-point deficits. Strikingly, with the Patriots riding Brady's arm to the hilt – New England passed on 82% of its snaps – didn't kick into gear until the GQ quarterback beat the clock in another sense. In the first half, Brady was pummeled on a few deep dropbacks – which is always asking.

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