FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Quarterback Tom Brady of the New England Patriots doesn’t know San Diego quarterback Philip Rivers well on a personal level.

But as Brady began his preparations for the playoff game Sunday against the Chargers, he said he only had to think back to their AFC championship game matchup during the 2007 season to remind himself of Rivers’ toughness.

“I mean, the guy played with a torn ACL. We played in 10-degree weather and he was still firing dimes out there,” Brady said Monday on WEEI radio. “So the guy’s got all of the confidence in the world. It makes for a great matchup.”

New England won that day and Brady enters Sunday’s game with a 7-0 record as a starter against Rivers, including 4-0 in games at home and 2-0 in the playoffs.

Rivers earned his lone victory against New England during the 2008 regular season. Brady was sidelined by a knee injury.

New England has won four straight games in the series since then. The Patriots beat the Chargers 21-13 last season.

History aside, Brady said it doesn’t diminish his respect for Rivers. At age 37, Rivers ended the regular season by throwing for at least 4,000 yards for the sixth straight season. He also posted at least 30 passing touchdowns for the sixth time since becoming the Chargers’ starter in 2006.

Like Brady, he’s been incredibly durable during his career, not missing a regular-season start for 13 consecutive seasons.

“He’s a great leader. He’s a great passer of the football,” Brady said. “He’s kind of like me. He wants the ball out of his hands. He kind of wants to be able to anticipate coverages. He’s got really a great group of skill players – backs, tight ends, receivers. They’re playing as well as any offense that’s played all season. He’s having an incredible year.”

As is Los Angeles’ defense. The Chargers ended the regular season ranked eighth in the NFL, allowing 21 points per game, allowing only 228 yards passing per game (ranked ninth). They beat the Ravens 23-17 in the wild-card round but led 23-3 in the fourth quarter before allowing a pair of late touchdowns.

It’s why Brady said his preparations for the Chargers started immediately after that game.

“I was watching film all night,” Brady said.

PACKERS: A person familiar with the decision said Tennessee offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur accepted the offer to become Green Bay’s head coach.

BEARS: Cody Parkey’s missed 43-yard field goal in the final seconds that gave Philadelphia a 16-15 upset win in Sunday’s wild-card playoff game was officially ruled a block by the NFL.

TELEVISION: The league said that there was an average of 28.4 million viewers for the four wild-card round games – up 12 percent over last year.

STEELERS: Pittsburgh parted ways with running backs coach James Saxon.

BILLS: Buffalo signed Duke Williams after he led the Canadian Football League with 1,579 yards receiving.