FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- The New England Patriots locked up the No. 1 seed in the AFC and home-field advantage in the playoffs with a 26-6 victory over the New York Jets on Sunday afternoon in arctic conditions at Gillette Stadium.
Needing a win or a Pittsburgh loss among other scenarios, the AFC East champion Patriots wrapped up their regular season at 13-3 to secure the conference's top spot for a second consecutive season and the seventh time overall.
Only San Francisco and Denver have claimed more No. 1 seeds, with eight each.
The 40-year-old Brady came out of the game in favor of backup Brian Hoyer at the start of the Patriots' final drive with 5:59 left in the fourth quarter.
New York (5-11) finished last in the AFC East for the second straight season and the third time in four years.
The Jets are on the outside of the playoff picture for the seventh straight season, with their last playoff triumph being a 28-21 win at New England in the AFC divisional round on Jan. 16, 2011.
The Patriots outgained the Jets in total yardage 330-247 and held New York to 0 of 12 on third down.
Five-time Pro-Bowl linebacker James Harrison made his Patriots debut after signing with the team on Dec. 26 following his release from the Steelers. Harrison had four tackles and two sacks.
Stephen Gostkowski's 21-yard field goal with 1:29 remaining in the third quarter accounted for the period's only score and extended New England's lead to 24-3.
Chandler Catanzaro's second field goal of the day, this from 35 yards out, brought New York within 24-6 at the 10:28 mark of the fourth quarter.
Eric Lee sacked Petty in the end zone for a safety with 6:04 to go in the game, making it 26-6.
The Patriots led 21-3 at halftime.
New England was off and running after receiving the opening kickoff, driving 75 yards on 13 plays to score a touchdown on Lewis' 3-yard rush with 9:30 left in the first quarter.
After Catanzaro's 48-yard field goal made it 7-3 with 1:42 to go in the first quarter, the Patriots effectively put the game out of reach with a pair of second-quarter touchdowns.
Brady found Brandin Cooks for a 5-yard scoring connection at 4:14 of the second quarter before Lewis reached the end zone for the second time on another 5-yard pass from Brady with 20 seconds to play in the half.
NOTES: With the thermometer reading 13 degrees at kickoff, Sunday's game was the coldest regular-season home game in Patriots history. ... The Patriots passed out 65,000 hand warmers to fans before the game. ... Jets S Marcus Maye was ruled out with an ankle injury and WR Robby Anderson was evaluated for a head injury in the third quarter. ... RB James White (ankle) was inactive for New England along with RB Rex Burkhead (knee), RB Mike Gillislee (knee), WR Chris Hogan (shoulder), DT Alan Branch (knee), OL Cole Croston and LB David Harris. ... The Jets placed two-time Pro-Bowl RB Matt Forte (knee) on injured reserve Saturday. ... New York's inactives were DE Muhammad Wilkerson, TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins (rib/foot), RT Brandon Shell (concussion), WR Lucky Whitehead, OLB Freddie Bishop, CB Rashard Robinson and DE Deon Simon. ... New England beat New York 24-17 in the teams' first meeting in Week 6 on Oct. 15. The Patriots swept the season series with the Jets for the 18th time.