The NFL Playoffs are underway and after a thrilling Wildcard weekend, the NFC and AFC Divisional round matchups are set. The San Francisco 49ers put on a dominant second-half showing as they beat rival Seattle Seahawks by a score of 41-23. The 49ers will take on the Dallas Cowboys this upcoming Sunday in a historic matchup that pins the NFL’s best defenses against two potent offenses. The 49ers currently stand as 2 to 1 favorites with rising star quarterback Brock Purdy thriving and a defense that continues to overwhelm NFL offenses.
The Cowboys are coming off a solid win over the Tom Brady-led Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Bucs had the worst regular season record to enter the playoffs, standing at 8-9, and failed to make an impact on offense or defense all game. The Cowboys defense shut the Tampa Bay offense down until the very last play of the third quarter when the Bucs finally scored. On the other side of the ball, the Cowboys offense dominated throughout. In large part through the air attack of quarterback Dak Prescott, wide receiver CeeDee Lamb, and tight end Dalton Schultz. The Cowboys will look to use their offensive weapons wisely and upset the San Francisco 49ers when they square off Sunday.
Around the league, big-time upsets occurred. In the NFC, the New York Giants went into Minnesota and defeated the Vikings with clutch performances on offense. Quarterback Daniel Jones used his legs and arm to break down the Vikings defense and Saquon Barkley reminded us why he is still one of the best running backs in the league. Another helpful contributor was wide receiver Isaiah Hodgins who broke out with eight catches for over 100 yards and a score. The Giants will take on the NFC East Champion Philadelphia Eagles in Philly this coming Saturday.
In the AFC, the Jacksonville Jaguars completed a comeback for the ages. Trailing the Los Angeles Chargers 27-0, the Jaguars put on a remarkable offensive display in the second half and hit a game-winning field goal as time expired to win 31-30. The 27-0 deficit marked the 5th largest comeback in NFL history. The Jaguars move into the Divisional round with serious momentum but face a tough challenge in the form of the Kansas City Chiefs. AFC favorites, the Buffalo Bills and Cincinnati Bengals both won close games at home against Miami and Baltimore and are now set to face off against each other in what should be an electric shootout.
This weekend’s action kicks off on Saturday with the Chiefs vs. Jaguars and Giants vs. Eagles and then on Sunday the Bills host the Bengals, and finally, the Divisional round culminates with the 49ers playing host to the Cowboys, Sunday evening at 3:30 pm PT.