@TSFSports NFL Divisional Playoff recap and commentary: Bad blood sets the stage for Championship Sunday
Michael Crabtree and Colin Kaepernick will have their work cut out for them against the Seahawks next week.
Championship Sunday will renew the rivalry of Tom Brady and Peyton Manning when the New England Patriots meet the Denver Broncos in the AFC Championship. In the NFC, the San Francisco 49ers and the Seattle Seahawks will meet in the rubber match after splitting their regular season meetings. This weekend, the two NFC West representatives eliminated the top two teams from the NFC South in the Saints and Panthers, respectively.
Saturday January 11, 2014:
Seattle Seahawks 23, New Orleans Saints 15 - By the time Drew Brees and the Saints arrived in their physical divisional round meeting with the Seahawks, their opposition’s thoughts were focused on hosting the NFC Championship next week. The Saints were shut out for three quarters due to timely drives and a very aggressive defensive performance. Seattle’s Marshawn Lynch rushed for 140 bruising yards on 28 carries with two touchdowns. Brees passed for 309 yards and Marques Colston — whose ill-advised forward lateral ended the game caught 11 balls for 144 yards and a score. Seattle faces the winner of today’s Panthers/49ers contest.
|NEW ORLEANS SAINTS|
New England Patriots 43, Indianapolis Colts 22 - For the second consecutive game, LaGarrette Blount was a sledgehammer for the New England Patriots offense. Blount pounded the Indianapolis Colts for 168 yards on 24 carries, including a 73 yard rumble as the Patriots move on to the AFC Championship. Andrew Luck threw three or more interceptions for the second straight week — his first coming in the opening minute of action. There was no comeback in the cards as the Patriots controlled the time of possession and the Colts never led.
|NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS|
Sunday January 12, 2014:
San Francisco 49ers 23, Carolina Panthers 10 - A fourth and goal gamble in the first quarter proved costly for the Panthers — wh0 were stopped twice on the 1-yard line by a stout 49ers defense. Colin Kaepernick passed for a touchdown and ran for another as San Francisco heads to its third consecutive NFC Championship Game. Anquan Boldin aka Mr. January caught 8 balls for 136 yards and Frank Gore rushed for 84 yards on 17 carries. Cam Newton got the Panthers offense rolling early, but two failed red zone appearances seemed to demoralize the offense. Newton was picked off twice and sacked four times. Ted Ginn Jr. had four receptions for 104 yards.
|SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS|
Denver Broncos 24, San Diego Chargers 17 - The injury to Broncos cornerback Chris Harris Jr. nearly proved disastrous, but Peyton Manning was able to bail his team out once again. The win puts Denver in the AFC title game for the first time in eight seasons. Wes Welker returned to the lineup after suffering from a concussion and caught a touchdown pass. Phillip Rivers was valiant in defeat, leading the Chargers back from a 17-0 deficit — passing for two 4th quarter touchdowns. San Diego struggled in their running game as Ryan Matthews and Danny Woodhead were rendered ineffective. Keenan Allen capped of a great rookie season with six catches for 142 yards and two touchdowns.
|SAN DIEGO CHARGERS|