As the masses descend upon 1 Patriot Place on Sunday for what promises to be a thrilling AFC title game, one person has made it clear he won't be there.
Not just anybody, mind you, but Roger Goodell. The NFL's most influential figure had a choice to make between this or the Atlanta-Green Bay NFC Championship, and he chose to spend his Sunday down south, per ESPN's Mike Reiss.
Roger Goodell will attend the NFC Championship game in Atlanta on Sunday, per a league spokesman.— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) January 17, 2017
Gee, I wonder why. It's not like he's worried about his public image in Foxborough, or stressed about getting booed or anything. Almost sounds like going to a game at Gillette may be awkward for him -- then again, I never tried suspending a franchise quarterback and waging a war against him in the most self-aggrandizing fashion possible, so I'm not exactly an expert on these matters.
Goodell's last Patriots game came after the 2014 season, when he attended both the divisional game and the AFC Championship. He stopped by Seattle, Atlanta and Kansas City so far in this year's playoffs.
This situation's almost a lot similar to avoiding one supermarket because of a strong possibility of running into your ex, so you end up going well out of your way to another supermarket a few towns over.
Follow Rob Riches on Twitter @Riches61