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The NFL playoffs continued with the divisional round this weekend.
Eight team remained entering the weekend. A trip to the conference championship game was on the line for all the teams. So who got closer to getting to Super Bowl XLVIII? Here’s a recap of this weekend’s divisional games.
New Orleans Saints vs. Seattle Seahawks: The Seahawks beat the Saints 23-15. The Saints were shut out in the first half by the Seahawks. Marshawn Lynch ran for 140 yards and two touchdowns, and set a franchise record for rushing yards in the playoffs, according to the Associated Press. Steven Hauschka had three field goals for the Seahawks. The Saints struggled on offense and defense and were no match for the Seahawks.
San Francisco 49ers vs. Carolina Panthers: The 49ers will go to the NFC championship game after beating the Panthers 23-10. 49ers' quarterback Colin Kaepernick outperformed the Panthers' Cam Newton, throwing for 196 yards and one touchdown, and ran in for a touchdown. Newton was intercepted two times and sacked five times. The 49ers had a 12-10 lead at halftime, and the Panthers couldn’t score in the second half. It’s the second time that the Panthers have lost in the division round of the playoffs at home.
Denver Bronco vs. San Diego Chargers: The Broncos beat the Chargers 24-17. The Broncos had a 17-0 lead entering the fourth quarter and the Chargers came back. Keenan Allen scored his second touchdown with about five and a half minutes left to give the Chargers a 24-14 lead. Nick Novak made a field goal with just less than four minute to bring the Charges to within a touchdown. However Novak messed up the kick after the field goal and the Broncos kept the ball the rest of the game. Peyton Manning won for the first time in the postseason since leading to Indianapolis Colts to the win over the New York Jets in the AFC championship game in 2010, according to the AP.
Indianapolis Colts vs. New England Patriots: The Patriots beat the Colts 43-22. The Colts were behind 21-12 at the half, but they cut the lead to seven with five minutes left in the third quarter. The Patriots dominated the rest of the game. LeGarrette Blount ran for four touchdowns. Andrew Luck had three interceptions. After the Colts got to within seven they couldn’t do anything offensively and failed to stop the Patriots.
The Patriots will play the Broncos in the AFC championship game next weekend. The 49ers will play the Seahawks in the NFC championship game. I think that the Patriots will go on to the Super Bowl. The last time the Patriots played the Broncos they won, and they are unbeatable right now. No other team can do what the Patriots are doing right now. I think the 49ers will also go to the Super Bowl. They know what it takes to make it to the Super Bowl and will do it again this year.
image: Wikimedia Commons