The San Francisco 49ers are in the NFC Championship for the second year in a row and hoping for better results this time as they travel to the Georgia Dome to take on the Atlanta Falcons. The matchup features the top two seeds in the conference, both of whom were among the early season favorites to make it to Super Bowl XLVII.
Atlanta is coming off the first playoff win in the careers of coach Mike Smith and quarterback Matt Ryan. The pairing had lost all three of their previous playoff games before beating the Seahawks 30-28 on a late Matt Bryant field goal after the Seahawks had taken the lead with 31 seconds remaining. To win against the 49ers, they'll need another strong game from Ryan and a passing attack that ranked sixth in the league during the regular season.
The 49ers are back in the championship game with a similar team to last year, but with one major difference. Colin Kaepernick has taken over as quarterback and Alex Smith is now his backup. Despite being a team that got it done with defense during the regular season (second in scoring defense, third in total defense), San Francisco beat the Packers last weekend thanks to their offense. Led by Kaepernick and his 181 yards rushing, the 49ers put up 45 points on Green Bay in a 14-point win.
Sunday, Jan. 20, 3 p.m. ET
Georgia Dome, Atlanta, Ga.
Atlanta: WAGA 5
San Francisco: KTVU 2
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