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Tom Brady (thumb) playing in AFC title game vs. Jaguars

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  • By Around The NFL staff NFL.com
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As if there were any doubt, Tom Brady is going to play in Sunday's AFC Championship Game against the Jacksonville Jaguars.

The five-time world champion has played in six conference title games in a row. A thumb injury suffered earlier in the week isn't going to keep him from participating in the seventh, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported. Brady is officially active.

Brady was wearing a strip of black tape on his right hand and a white glove on his left hand during pregame warmups. He wasn't wearing a glove on his right hand.

Speaking to Westwood One's Jim Gray in an interview that aired Sunday, Brady was asked whether he can grip the ball and if he felt he could throw accurately.

"We'll see. I haven't tried it in a couple days," Brady said. "You know, we got a few things that we're gonna try and hopefully it can help me be effective. You know, a lot of people deal with injuries. This is one for a quarterback, obviously on my throwing hand, I don't love to deal with, but I don't have a choice."

Brady made half of his throws Friday without a glove and performed well, sources informed Rapoport. Two days prior, Brady was gushing blood after suffering a cut to his right thumb, which required several stitches. NFL Network's Mike Garafolo reported the injury was the result of a collision with running back Rex Burkhead during Wednesday's practice.

Brady, previously listed as questionable, deflected all injury questions during his presser Friday and wore gloves on both hands while doing so. He might sport only one Sunday.

Brady hopes to play without a glove on his throwing hand, although that will hinge on the weather, per Rapoport. Temperatures in the 30s might necessitate a glove. The forecast in Foxborough at kickoff is 48 degrees and partly sunny, according to accuweather.com.

That might be warm enough for Brady to ditch the glove.

Also for the Patriots, Burkhead (knee) did not suffer any setbacks this week and will play. Running back Mike Gillislee (knee) is inactive, as are right tackle La'Adrian Waddle (knee) and defensive lineman Alan Branch (knee).

Here are other injuries we're monitoring heading into the conference championship games:

1. Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Adam Thielen (lower back) is expected to play against the Philadelphia Eagles. Thielen has been in a considerable amount of pain this week but plans to play through it. Cornerback Mackensie Alexander (rib, illness) and safety Andrew Sendejo (concussion) are also expected to play.

2. Jaguars safety Tashaun Gipson (foot), after being limited in practice, is expected to play versus the Patriots. He was not listed among the inactives.

The same cannot for running Chris Ivory, who is a healthy scratch again.

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