The NFC Championship concludes Sunday’s NFL action with the Detroit Lions facing the San Francisco 49ers at 6:30 PM ET.
The 49ers have been my pick as the best team in football all season. After starting the year at 5-0, they suffered their first loss at the hands of your Cleveland Browns, by a score of 19-17. They then lost their next two games, falling to 5-3, before returning to their dominant form and not losing again until the Ravens crushed them on Christmas 33-19.
The Lions finished with the same record, having their mix of wins and losses more spaced out. The Lions felt like a great mix of high-powered offense and a solid defense, but then they’d have random games of disappointment like losing to the Rams 38-6 and to the Bears 28-13. They then had the controversial loss to the Cowboys 20-19 in Week 17 that cost them a shot at the top seed in the NFC. In a way, though, that helped fuel them even more as the gritty underdog team that might be viewed that way, but is playing at a very high level.
Detroit has played two pretty close games in the playoffs, beating the Rams 24-23 and the Buccaneers 31-23. One might say that they had a relatively easy path to the NFC Championship, but they’re getting the job done. One thing that I love about this game is that it’s a fresh match-up — we haven’t seen the Lions vs. 49ers in awhile, let alone for stakes this high. Who will out-duel the other when a former No. 1 overall pick (Jared Goff) takes on a former Mr. Irrelevant (Brock Purdy)? I love both teams and will be happy with either one making the Super Bowl, but my pick remains with the 49ers by a score of 27-20.
Use this as your open thread to discuss the NFC Championship, Browns fans.