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NFL Game Summary - San Francisco at Atlanta



(Sunday, January 20th)

Final Score: San Francisco 28, Atlanta 24

Atlanta, GA (Sports Network) - The San Francisco 49ers are headed back to the Super Bowl for the first time since the 1994 season.

Frank Gore scored a pair of touchdowns in the second half and the 49ers rallied past the Atlanta Falcons, 28-24, in the NFC Championship Game.

San Francisco needed a big defensive stand after Gore's 9-yard rushing touchdown put the 49ers ahead by four with 8:23 to play.

And that's just what they got. San Francisco coach Jim Harbaugh was steaming on the sideline after the officials upheld Harry Douglas' 22-yard juggling catch, which put the ball at the 49ers' 28. Atlanta moved the ball to the 10- yard line and the game came down to two plays. On 3rd-and-4, Ahmad Brooks broke up Matt Ryan's pass and NaVorro Bowman gave the 49ers the ball back after knocking down Ryan's throw to Roddy White on fourth down.

After the 49ers went three-and-out, Atlanta got the ball back at its own 41 with six seconds to play. Julio Jones caught a 24-yard pass as time expired.

"We rose up at the end. That was a great finish for our defense," Harbaugh said. "It put an exclamation point on the game."

The victory was sweet redemption for San Francisco, which lost to the Super Bowl champion New York Giants in the NFC title game last year.

John Harbaugh's Ravens beat the Patriots later Sunday to set up a Harbaugh brothers Super Bowl. Super Bowl XLVII will take place in New Orleans on Feb. 3.

San Francisco, which is a perfect 5-0 in the Super Bowl, will be trying to join Pittsburgh as the only teams with six Super Bowl titles.

Colin Kaepernick completed 16-of-21 passes for 233 yards and a touchdown for the 49ers, who took down the Green Bay Packers in the divisional round last weekend. The second-year signal-caller, who set an NFL rushing record for a quarterback with 181 yards last week, was limited to 21 rushing yards on Sunday.

"He just played great. He played great," Jim Harbaugh said. "I don't even know the words to say it. I mean, it was a great performance by the quarterback. And many others. Everybody chipped in this one, played their hearts out and thank you to them."

Gore carried the ball 21 times for 90 yards for the second-seeded 49ers, who trailed by 17 early in the second quarter. Vernon Davis hauled in five passes for 106 yards and a touchdown.

Ryan connected on 30-of-42 passes for 396 yards, three touchdowns and an interception for the top-seeded Falcons, who beat the Seattle Seahawks last week to make the NFC Championship Game for the third time in franchise history (1998 and 2004).

Jones caught 11 passes for 182 yards and two scores, White hauled in seven passes for 100 yards and Tony Gonzalez caught eight passes for 78 yards and a touchdown.

"We just didn't make enough plays to win the ballgame," Falcons coach Mike Smith said. "We played hard and we had our chances for this to be a different outcome. We just came up short."

The Falcons scored a touchdown with 25 seconds left in the first half to take a 24-14 lead into the locker room.

However, the momentum shifted back to the 49ers early in the second half. Randy Moss caught passes of 21 and 17 yards around Delanie Walker's 20-yard catch. On 1st-and-goal from the five, Gore rumbled into the end zone.

San Francisco's defense followed with a big play, as Chris Culliver picked off Ryan at the 38-yard line of the 49ers. Davis caught a 31-yard pass on the first play. The 49ers got to the 20 before sending David Akers out to try a 38-yard field goal. Akers' attempt hit off the left upright and was no good.

Another big mistake by Ryan gave the 49ers another chance. On 2nd-and-9 from the San Francisco 28, Ryan fumbled the snap out of the shotgun. The 49ers recovered with less than a minute left in the third frame.

"It was just kind of a freak play. I took my eye off the ball for a second and it ended up on the ground," Ryan said. "Against a good team, you can't have those kind of mistakes."

A 15-yard roughing the passer penalty on third down gave the 49ers a fresh set of downs. Michael Crabtree followed with a 33-yard catch on the first play of the fourth quarter. Just two plays later, Crabtree caught a pass for four yards before Dunta Robinson stripped the ball. Atlanta recovered the ball at the 1-yard line.

After holding the Falcons to a three-and-out, Ted Ginn Jr. returned a punt 20 yards to the Atlanta 38. Crabtree caught an 8-yard pass following four straight runs. Gore then found a hole on the right side and scampered into the end zone for a 28-24 lead with 8:23 to play.

San Francisco's defense held strong to secure the come-from-behind victory.

The Falcons jumped out to a big lead for the second consecutive week. White kept Atlanta's first drive alive with a 16-yard catch on 3rd-and-9. Just two plays later, Ryan confused the defense with a play-action pass. Jones was wide open down the left side for a 46-yard touchdown.

The home team tacked on a field goal after San Francisco went three-and-out. Jones helped set up Matt Bryant's 35-yard field goal with a 27-yard catch.

Atlanta was driving again at the end of the first quarter. White hauled in a 23-yard pass on the final play to move the ball to the San Francisco 20. On the first play of the second stanza, Jones made a great catch in the left corner of the end zone to make it 17-0.

The 49ers' offense finally woke up on the ensuing possession. Gore started the series with four straight runs, which gave San Francisco its first two first downs of the contest. On 3rd-and-7, Davis caught a 27-yard pass. That set up LaMichael James' 15-yard TD run with 8:08 left in the half.

San Francisco put together another long scoring drive on its next possession. Davis' 19-yard catch, Kaepernick's 23-yard run, a 15-yard unnecessary roughness penalty on Atlanta and Davis' 25-yard catch put the ball at the four. From there, Kaepernick used the play-action pass to find Davis for a touchdown with 1:55 remaining.

Ryan and the Falcons responded with an impressive 80-yard drive that only took 1:30 off the clock. Ryan completed four passes of at least 13 yards to move the ball to the San Francisco 16. Gonzalez followed with consecutive catches, with the second resulting in a 10-yard score and 24-14 lead.

Game Notes

Jacquizz Rodgers carried the ball 10 times for 32 yards for Atlanta, which was trying to make it back to the Super Bowl for the first time since the 1998 season ... The Falcons led Seattle 20-0 at halftime in last week's playoff game ... Ryan set Falcons playoff records with 396 yards and a 114.8 passer rating ... James, a rookie out of Oregon, had zero touchdowns in the regular season ... Since 2001, including playoffs, the 49ers were 1-27 in games they trailed by at least 17 points ... Jones set a Falcons franchise record for the most receiving yards in a playoff game.

01/20 22:08:49 ET

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Schedule

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Standings

 2013 American Football Conference Standings 
East Division W L T Pct. PF PA Home Away Div Conf
y-New England 12 4 0 .750 444 338 8-0 4-4 4-2 9-3
NY Jets 8 8 0 .500 290 387 6-2 2-6 3-3 5-7
Miami 8 8 0 .500 317 335 4-4 4-4 2-4 7-5
Buffalo 6 10 0 .375 339 388 4-4 2-6 3-3 5-7
 
North Division W L T Pct. PF PA Home Away Div Conf
y-Cincinnati 11 5 0 .688 430 305 8-0 3-5 3-3 8-4
Pittsburgh 8 8 0 .500 379 370 5-3 3-5 4-2 6-6
Baltimore 8 8 0 .500 320 352 6-2 2-6 3-3 6-6
Cleveland 4 12 0 .250 308 406 3-5 1-7 2-4 3-9
 
South Division W L T Pct. PF PA Home Away Div Conf
y-Indianapolis 11 5 0 .688 391 336 6-2 5-3 6-0 9-3
Tennessee 7 9 0 .438 362 381 3-5 4-4 2-4 6-6
Jacksonville 4 12 0 .250 247 449 1-7 3-5 3-3 4-8
Houston 2 14 0 .125 276 428 1-7 1-7 1-5 2-10
 
West Division W L T Pct. PF PA Home Away Div Conf
y-Denver 13 3 0 .813 606 399 7-1 6-2 5-1 9-3
x-Kansas City 11 5 0 .688 430 305 5-3 6-2 2-4 7-5
x-San Diego 9 7 0 .563 396 348 5-3 4-4 4-2 6-6
Oakland 4 12 0 .250 322 453 3-5 1-7 1-5 4-8
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
 2013 National Football Conference Standings 
East Division W L T Pct. PF PA Home Away Div Conf
y-Philadelphia 10 6 0 .625 442 382 4-4 6-2 4-2 9-3
Dallas 8 8 0 .500 439 432 5-3 3-5 5-1 7-5
NY Giants 7 9 0 .438 294 383 4-4 3-5 3-3 6-6
Washington 3 13 0 .188 334 478 2-6 1-7 0-6 1-11
 
North Division W L T Pct. PF PA Home Away Div Conf
y-Green Bay 8 7 1 .531 417 428 4-3-1 4-4 3-2-1 6-5-1
Chicago 8 8 0 .500 445 478 5-3 3-5 2-4 4-8
Detroit 7 9 0 .438 395 376 4-4 3-5 4-2 6-6
Minnesota 5 10 1 .344 391 480 5-3 0-7-1 2-3-1 4-7-1
 
South Division W L T Pct. PF PA Home Away Div Conf
y-Carolina 12 4 0 .750 366 241 7-1 5-3 5-1 9-3
x-New Orleans 11 5 0 .688 414 304 8-0 3-5 5-1 9-3
Atlanta 4 12 0 .250 353 443 3-5 1-7 1-5 3-9
Tampa Bay 4 12 0 .250 288 389 3-5 1-7 1-5 2-10
 
West Division W L T Pct. PF PA Home Away Div Conf
y-Seattle 13 3 0 .813 417 231 7-1 6-2 4-2 10-2
x-San Francisco 12 4 0 .750 406 272 6-2 6-2 5-1 9-3
Arizona 10 6 0 .625 379 324 6-2 4-4 2-4 6-6
St. Louis 7 9 0 .438 348 364 5-3 2-6 1-5 4-8
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
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    Saturday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • PGA: RBC Heritage

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  • Canes head coach Kirk Muller presser

    Today at 11:00 am on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
CHR 2
DUR 9
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
CHI
 
7:05pm Tonight
DUR
NOR
 
7:05pm Tuesday
PHI 0
ATL 0
7:05pm Tuesday
NYY 0
CHC 0
7:05pm Tuesday
BAL 0
TAM 0
7:08pm Tuesday
DET 0
CLE 0
Final
CIN 7
PIT 5
Final
MIA 11
WAS 2
Final
TEX 5
SEA 0
Final
CWS 2
BOS 1
Final
HOU 2
KAN 4
Final
MIL 1
STL 6
Final
MIN 3
TOR 9
Final
ARI 0
NYM 9
Final
ANA 9
OAK 10
Final
SDP 2
COL 3
Final
SFG 3
LOS 2
12:35pm Today
CIN
PIT
12:35pm Today
BAL
TAM
 
1:05pm Today
NYY
CHC
 
1:10pm Today
MIL
STL
 
3:40pm Today
ARI
NYM
 
7:05pm Tonight
PHI
ATL
 
7:05pm Tonight
NYY
CHC
 
7:08pm Tonight
DET
CLE
 
7:10pm Tonight
MIA
WAS
 
8:05pm Tonight
TEX
SEA
 
8:10pm Tonight
CWS
BOS
 
8:10pm Tonight
HOU
KAN
 
8:10pm Tonight
MIN
TOR
 
10:05pm Tonight
ANA
OAK
 
10:10pm Tonight
SDP
COL
 
10:15pm Tonight
SFG
LOS
 
Final
BRK 98
NYK 109
Final
LAC 117
DEN 105
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
CHI
 
7:00pm Tonight
ORL
IND
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIL
ATL
 
8:00pm Tonight
CLE
BRK
 
8:00pm Tonight
MEM
DAL
 
8:00pm Tonight
OKC
DET
 
8:00pm Tonight
NOP
HOU
 
8:00pm Tonight
SAN
LAL
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIA
PHI
 
8:00pm Tonight
NYK
TOR
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
UTA
 
8:00pm Tonight
BOS
WAS
 
10:30pm Tonight
DEN
GSW
 
10:30pm Tonight
POR
LAC
 
10:30pm Tonight
SAC
PHO
 
7:00pm Tonight
TAM
MON
7:30pm Tonight
PIT
CLB
10:00pm Tonight
ANA
DAL
Final
CHR 2
DUR 9
 
7:05pm Tonight
DUR
NOR