By Tessa Jackson
Well, I got the exciting games I asked for this past weekend! All four NFL games broadcast during Saturday and Sunday were won on the last play of the game. The first three were walk-off field goals and, in arguably the most exciting playoff game ever, the Kansas City Chiefs and the Buffalo Bills went into overtime.
The biggest surprise of the week was the San Francisco 49ers taking out the No. 1 seeded Green Bay Packers. No one saw that coming. It was a very cold and snowy game and I did hear one announcer say at the beginning of the game that it could come down to special teams. He turned out to be absolutely right.
The Packers scored a quick touchdown on the first drive of the game, but after that it was a game of sacks, interceptions, and fourth down stops. The 49ers blocked a field goal attempt at the end of the first half to keep the score 7-0 in favor of the Packers. Then, with Green Bay ahead by the score of 10-3 and less than five minutes to go in the fourth quarter, the 49er’s Jordan Willis went straight over the hiker to block a Green Bay punt from deep in their own territory. When the ball finally came down, Talanoa Hufanga on the punt return team picked up the ball and ran a few short yards into GreenBay’s endzone for a touchdown to tie up the game. After the Packers went three-and-out on their next possession, the 49ers got the ball back at their 29 with 3:20 left, drove into field-goal range on Green Bay’s 38 yard line, and then ran down the clock to set up a clutch, 45-yard field goad by Robbie Gould to win the game as the clock expired.
Both of the number one seeds, the Packers and the Tennessee Titans, were taken out; which makes me think that having the week off is not the reward it is supposed to be. Maybe it’s better to keep your momentum going.
My sister-in-law, Amy, is a 49er fan and we were discussing who we thought the 49ers would want to face between the Los Angeles Rams and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. It was an easy choice, the 49ers always seem to play the Rams well.
Apparently the Los Angeles Rams agree because I read yesterday how they are restricting ticket sales for the NFC championship game to Southern California residents only. I might get mad at them if I was a fan, but I also don’t blame them, they need all the help they can get to beat that 49ers defense!
In addition to National Conference championship game between the Rams and the 49ers, taking place on Sunday at 3:30, we also have the American Conference championship being decided between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Cincinnati Bengals at noon (PST) on Sunday.
I’m going to be rooting for the Bengals, my brother Paul’s favorite team, who, before this season, hadn’t won a playoff game since 1991 and who have never won the Super Bowl. They are the biggest underdog of the pack, currently at +750 (so if you bet 100, you would win 750.) The odds for the other teams so far are 49ers +390, Rams +181, and Chiefs +107.
I’m certainly looking forward to some more exciting games.