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The news that keeps us Onward On!

The Carroll News

The news that keeps us Onward On!

The Carroll News

NFL Divisional Round determined by a handful of one score games

Joe Glorioso, Wikimedia Commons
Lamar Jackson is tasked with defeating Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship.

The NFL Divisional Round is officially over. Three of the four contests were decided by one score, thus it’s essential to break down the key moments and storylines that came out of each game in the second round of the NFL Playoffs.

Ravens Dominate Second Half in 34-10 Rout of Texans

Believe it or not, this game was 10-10 at halftime and the Texans even had the opportunity to take the lead as time expired in the first half, but their field goal was blocked and the Ravens never looked back. Quarterback Lamar Jackson played mistake-free football, throwing for 152 yards and two touchdowns while also running for 100 yards and two TDs on the ground. Baltimore’s No. 1 ranked scoring defense suffocated C.J. Stroud as he was uncomfortable in the pocket all day long. Nonetheless, what a season it was for Stroud and the Texans, going from the second worst record in the NFL just one season ago to making it to the divisional round under new head coach DeMeco Ryans. Baltimore will now face off against the Chiefs with a trip to Super Bowl LVIII on the line.

49ers Escape Packers 24-21

The Packers were in control of the game nearly all of the way through, but a missed field goal by Anders Carlson while up 21-17 opened the door for the 49ers. San Francisco was able to march down the field thanks to some clutch throws from Brock Purdy and a six yard TD run from Christian McCaffrey to give them the 24-21 lead. Jordan Love had a minute to get the Packers inside of field goal range, but he channeled his inner Brett Favre in the 2009 NFC Championship game, throwing across the field when the pass was intercepted by Dre Greenlaw, closing the game there. Despite being outplayed the majority of the contest, the 49ers remain alive in the NFL Playoff picture and will be facing off against the Detroit Lions in Santa Clara.

Lions One Win Away from First Ever Super Bowl with 31-23 Victory Over Buccaneers

After a tumultuous 30+ seasons in Motown, the Detroit Lions are finally back in the NFC Championship game and one win away from reaching their first-ever Super Bowl in franchise history. The two teams entered the second half nodded up at 10, but a dominant fourth quarter thanks to a 31-yard touchdown run from Lions running back Jahmyr Gibbs and a nine-yard pass from Jared Goff to Amon-Ra St. Brown extended the Detroit lead to 31-17 with five minutes left. The Bucs comeback fell short as Baker Mayfield threw his second interception of the game and the Lions put the stamp on their first NFC Championship appearance since 1991. Detroit will travel to Santa Clara to take on the aforementioned Brock Purdy and the 49ers.

Chiefs Win Third Straight Playoff Game Vs Bills 27-24

Let’s be honest, we all thought this would be the Bills’ year to finally beat Kansas City in the playoffs after coming devastatingly close the past two meetings. Unfortunately, the home-field advantage at Highmark Stadium wasn’t enough, seeing as the Chiefs punched their ticket to the AFC title game for the sixth straight year. Bills kicker Tyler Bass missed a potential game-tying field goal from 44 yards out, but the miss and the resulting criticism is arguably unfair. Some look to top receiver Stefon Diggs, who performed his best magic trick of the season by going “poof” when it mattered most. Diggs finished with three catches for 21 yards and dropped a crucial fourth-quarter deep pass from Josh Allen that would have set them up in the red zone. Patrick Mahomes has reached the AFC Championship in each year that he has been the starting QB for Kansas City. All eyes will be on Lamar Jackson, as he has the chance to make the entire country very happy by bouncing this Chiefs team and Taylor Swift out of the playoffs.

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