Championship Weekend Preview

NFL’S “FANTASTIC FOUR” READY FOR CHAMPIONSHIP WEEKEND

“This is playoff football,” says Baltimore Ravens linebacker RAY LEWIS. “Year after year, time after time, great competition. It really doesn’t get any better. That’s what playoff football is all about.”

For the second consecutive year, the final four teams are all division champions.

Last weekend was the highest scoring round in NFL postseason history (276 points), excluding an eight-game first round in 1982.

In the AFC Divisional Playoffs, the No. 4 seeded Ravens outlasted No. 1 Denver on the road in a double overtime marathon, earning a 38-35 win in the fourth-longest game in NFL history (76:42). Quarterback JOE FLACCO connected with wide receiver JACOBY JONES for a 70-yard touchdown pass with 31 seconds remaining to force OT, and rookie JUSTIN TUCKER kicked a 47-yard field goal 1:42 into the second overtime period.

Baltimore will travel to New England to face the No. 2 seeded Patriots, who scored 40+ points in a playoff game for the third time in team history in their 41-28 home victory over Houston on Sunday afternoon.

The top-seeded Falcons advanced to the NFC Championship Game as MATT BRYANT’s game-winning 49-yard field goal provided the winning points in Atlanta’s 30-28 win against Seattle. The Falcons, who have won eight of nine games at the Georgia Dome this season, will host the NFC Championship for the first time in club history.

San Francisco advanced to their second consecutive title game with a decisive 45-31 home victory against Green Bay, with quarterback COLIN KAEPERNICK leading the 49ers to 579 total net yards, the fourth-most by any team in a playoff game in NFL history.

With each of the four remaining playoff clubs looking to capitalize on the momentum built this past weekend in hopes of advancing to Super Bowl XLVII, they’ll have their work cut out for them on Championship Weekend.

A closer look at the AFC and NFC Championship Games:

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