Whereas it technically was not an NFC Championship Recreation, the Packers-Cowboys 1967 “Ice Bowl” set the usual by which future championship video games have been measured. The sport featured a number of legendary gamers and coaches, frigid temperatures and an epic end. With simply seconds remaining, quarterback Bart Starr’s sneak gave the Packers a 21-17 win en path to the fifth and ultimate championship win underneath Vince Lombardi.
Three years after the Packers’ iconic win, the NFL and AFL merged to what’s the modern-day NFL. Since 1970, the 2 greatest groups in every convention have confronted one another for the fitting to play within the Tremendous Bowl. And whereas the Tremendous Bowl is professional soccer’s signature occasion, the convention title video games have additionally featured a number of the best video games in NFL historical past.
With that in thoughts, we determined to have a look again on the 5 best NFC championships. Whereas every recreation is memorable, one specific recreation turned an everyday Joe into family identify.
Honorable point out
2007: Giants 23, Packers 20 (OT)
In a recreation performed in sub-zero temperatures, the Giants prevailed behind Plaxico Burress’ 11 receptions and Corey Webster’s time beyond regulation interception of Brett Favre. The choose arrange Lawrence Tynes’ game-winning area objective, because the Giants went on to upset the beforehand undefeated Patriots in Tremendous Bowl XLII. The bitter defeat was the ultimate recreation for Favre in a Packers uniform.
5. 2014: Seahawks 28, Packers 22 (OT)
Trailing 16-0 at halftime, the Seahawks lower their deficit to 5 factors on Russell Wilson’s brief landing run with 2:13 remaining in regulation. Seattle then efficiently transformed the onside kick, establishing Marshawn Lynch’s go-ahead landing run. Whereas the Packers did mange to power time beyond regulation on Mason Crosby’s 48-yard area objective, the Seahawks punched their Tremendous Bowl ticket when Wilson hit Jermaine Kearse for a 35-yard rating on the sixth play of the additional interval. The defending champion Seahawks would come up simply brief of their bid to repeat as champions. The Packers received only one playoff recreation from 2015-18 earlier than making return journeys to the title recreation in 2019-20.
In a basic championship recreation, neither workforce ever led by greater than seven factors, and the rating was tied on 4 completely different events. The Vikings, following Adrian Peterson’s third landing that tied the sport, have been in place to win it after advancing to the Saints’ 38-yard-line with 19 seconds left in regulation. However in what can be his ultimate move of the sport, Favre’s third-down move supposed for Sidney Rice was intercepted by Tracy Porter, forcing time beyond regulation. In time beyond regulation, two penalties in opposition to the Vikings’ protection, coupled by Pierre Thomas‘ two-yard run on a fourth-and-1 play, arrange Garrett Hartley’s game-winning area objective. New Orleans would go onto defeat the Colts in Tremendous Bowl XLIV, with Porter’s pick-six of Peyton Manning sealing the Saints’ 31-17 win.
3. 1998: Falcons 30, Vikings 27 (OT)
In probably the most stunning upsets in NFL postseason historical past, Atlanta’s “Soiled Birds” overcame a 13-point deficit to stun the Vikings, who went 15-1 throughout the common season. Forward 27-20, Gary Anderson, who didn’t miss a area objective throughout the common season, missed a 38-yard try with 2:07 left. The Falcons totally capitalized on Anderson’s miss, as Chris Chandler hit Terance Mathis for the game-tying landing with 57 seconds left in regulation.
After successful the coin toss, Minnesota was pressured to punt after Randall Cunningham’s third-down move to rookie sensation Randy Moss fell incomplete. The groups would then trade punts earlier than two Chandler completions to tight finish O.J. Santiago and two runs by Jamal Anderson arrange Morton Anderson’s game-winning, 38-yard kick. The Falcons’ luck, nevertheless, ran out within the Tremendous Bowl, as John Elway and the Broncos coasted to a 34-19 win. The Vikings are nonetheless in the hunt for their first journey to the Tremendous Bowl since January of 1977.
2. 1990: Giants 15, 49ers 13
“There shall be no three-peat.”
These phrases have been famously proclaimed by former CBS/Fox play-by-play analyst Pat Summerall after Matt Bahr’s 42-yard area objective gave the Giants an upset win over the defending two-time champion 49ers. In probably the most bodily soccer video games ever performed, the 49ers suffered a crushing blow when Giants lineman Leonard Marshall knocked Joe Montana out of the sport with about 10 minutes left and the 49ers forward, 13-9. After the Giants lower the deficit to 1 level, Lawrence Taylor gave his offense the ball again when he recovered 49ers halfback Roger Craig’s fumble in Giants territory.
Jeff Hostetler’s completions to Mark Bavaro and Stephen Baker, and a pivotal two-yard run by Ottis Anderson on a third-and-1 play, helped arrange Bahr’s game-winning area objective as time expired. Hostetler, Anderson, Bahr, and the Giants’ bodily protection every performed a job within the Giants’ upset win over the Payments in Tremendous Bowl XXV. The loss was the ultimate playoff begin for Montana with the 49ers, who fell painfully wanting changing into the primary workforce in historical past to win three straight Tremendous Bowls.
1. 1981: 49ers 28, Cowboys 27
Regardless of a dominant Week 6 win over the Cowboys, the 49ers trailed “America’s Group” by six factors following Danny White’s 21-yard landing move to Doug Cosbie. Needing to journey 89 yards in lower than 5 minutes, the 49ers relied on a number of sweeping runs by Lenvil Elliott, two clutch catches in site visitors by Freddie Solomon and Solomon’s 14-yard run on a reverse. Dealing with a third-down on the Cowboys’ 6-yard line, Montana rolled proper earlier than he was met by three Cowboys defenders. Dealing with the move rush, Montana lofted the ball to a spot in the long run zone the place he hoped Dwight Clark can be. Clark, who caught a 20-yard landing move earlier within the recreation, was certainly on the spot Montana hoped he can be. The dependable receiver jumped within the air, snared Montana’s move out of the sky and slammed the ball in the long run zone.
With Candlestick Park already in celebration mode, the 49ers’ protection nonetheless needed to cease the Cowboys’ offense, who acquired the ball again at their 25-yard line with two timeouts and 51 seconds left. The gang acquired tense after White hit Drew Pearson for 31 yards on the Cowboys’ first play. However on the subsequent play, White misplaced the ball after getting hit by Lawrence Pillers. The ball was scooped up by Jim Stuckey, who in his arms held the 49ers’ first Tremendous Bowl ticket.
“You simply beat America’s Group,” Cowboys defensive finish Ed “Too Tall’ Jones advised Montana, as recalled by Clark twenty years later. “Effectively,” Montana replied, “you possibly can sit at dwelling with the remainder of America and watch the Tremendous Bowl.”
The loss was the second of three consecutive NFC title recreation losses for the Cowboys. The win marked the start of the 49ers’ dynasty. San Francisco would win 5 Tremendous Bowls that included 4 throughout the Nineteen Eighties.