2017 NFL Conference Championship Game Recaps
Find out who made Super Bowl 51. Which teams head to Houston?
Chris Ransom Last Updated: January 22, 2017.
Game Recap: ATLANTA-Green Bay heads into Atlanta with the NFC on the line. The Packers were my preseason Super Bowl pick to win it all. Jordy Nelson played, but was a game time decision.
Atlanta opened the game with a very strong drive. They took up 6 minutes and 36 seconds having 6 first downs and 80 total yards on their opening drive. Quarterback Matt Ryan began the game 6/8 with 64 passing yards, 1 passing touchdown, and no interceptions.
Green Bay drove downfield. The Packers missed a field goal. Atlanta kept their 7-0 lead.
It looked like Atlanta would go ahead. A false start penalty by left guard Andy Levitre pushed Atlanta back giving the Falcons a 10-0 lead. Atlanta led 10-0 after one quarter.
Green Bay drove downfield. Jalen Collins forced and recovered a fumble. Collins is playing like a boundary cornerback that can compliment Robert Alford despite the absence of Desmond Trufant who happens to be Atlanta's best corner. Atlanta still leads 10-0.
Atlanta drove downfield. It was 3rd and 10 and Matt Ryan ran it in. Atlanta took a 17-0 lead.
Atlanta stopped Green Bay again. Atlanta got the ball back with a 17-0 lead.
Atlanta fumbled the ball. It looked like Jake Ryan recovered the ball before Atlanta punted it to Green Bay. Atlanta still led 17-0 in the second quarter.
Atlanta went for it on fourth down and got it. Atlanta led 24-0 at halftime.
Geen Bay got the ball to start the second half. Green Bay did not score on their first drive. Matt Ryan threw a touchdown pass to Julio Jones. That gave Atlanta a 31-0 lead.
Atlanta led 37-15 after three quarters. Atlanta took a 44-21 lead and won 44-21. Brett Hundley got some reps with Hundley filling in for Aaron Rodgers.
Quarterback Matt Ryan went 27/38 with 392 passing yards, 4 passing touchdowns, and no interceptions. Atlanta advanced to their first Super Bowl since making Super Bowl 33 in the 1998-1999 NFL Season.
4. Green Bay Packers 12-7-0
2. Atlanta Falcons 13-5-0
Game Recap: NEW ENGLAND-Pittsburgh played New England in two other AFC Championship games. New England won both of those games at Heinz Field. This contest was at Gillette Stadium.
New England won the coin toss. I was a little surprised that New England didn't defer to the second half. Tom Brady took the football. Brady threw a completion to Martellus Bennett. Tom Brady made a huge play to Julian Edelman that got the ball to the Pittsburgh 22-yard line. Tom Brady threw a 41-yard pass to Julian Edelman. Brady threw another completion. Brady threw another completion. New England settled for a field goal after an incomplete pass on third and one.
Le'veon Bell had a solid run. That set up second and seven. Bell gained 6-rushing yards. That set up a third and one. Sammie Coates dropped a deep pass. Pittsburgh punted the ball to New England.
New England got the ball back. New England ran it and threw an incompletion. That set up 3rd and 11. Tom Brady ducked after being sacked by Javon Hargrave. That was a huge stop by the Steelers.
Le'veon Bell ran for 6-rushing yards. That set up second and four. That set up a third and four for Pittsburgh. Ben Roethlisberger got the first third down conversion of the game with a nice throw. New England forced him out of the pocket. New England recovered and Malcolm Butler made an awesome deflection to keep Antonio Brown from getting another third down conversion.
Tom Brady threw two completions in the short passing game. Dion Lewis ran it on third and one to get the first down. Dion Lewis ran for big gain. Now its third and one again. Tom Brady threw a completion to Chris Hogan. New England kept driving.
Tom Brady threw a completion to Chris Hogan. Hogan got by James Harrison. Hogan looked a little slow to get up. It's hard to tell if he was injured. LeGarrette Blount ran it on the next play. That set up second and six. Ryan Shazier stopped Blount on that play. Shazier reacted well on that play. That set up a third and six. Tom Brady to Chris Hogan. That was a touchdown. New England took a 10-0 lead.
Pitsburgh began at their own 16-yard line. A dropped pass made it second and ten. Pittsburgh could not get the running game going. That made it third and ten. Eli Rodgers gained 16-yards at wide receiver on the completion. DeAngelo Williams was stopped as well as Bell. Pittsburgh gained some momentum on their drive near the end of the first quarter. New England led 10-0 after one quarter.
DeAngelo Williams had 15-yards on a rushing play. Ben Roethlisberger completed another pass. DeAngelo Williams ran it for a first down. Trey Flowers was slow to get up at 4-3 right end for the New England Patriots. Flowers is one player that provides a lot of success for the Patriots.
Dont'a Hightower made an awesome tackle. Hightower limited what Williams did on the screen pass. DeAngelo Williams ran it in for a rushing touchdown. That made it a 10-6 game. Ben Roethlisberger completed his last seven passes leading up to that touchdown. Ramon Foster set up an excellent block at left guard for the Steelers. Chris Boswell missed the extra point. New England led 10-6 in the second quarter.
New England got the ball again. Tom Brady threw a nine yard pass to Martellus Bennett. That made it second and one. LeGarrette Blount ran for a first down. Tom Brady threw a wide open pass to Chris Hogan. Hogan dropped an easy pass and had a Wes Welker moment. Tom Brady got blitzed and that set up a third and ten situation. Tom Brady threw a first down to Julian Edelman. That kept the Patriots drive alive.
Tom Brady threw a screen pass to Chris Hogan. Brady had good protection on that throw. Pittsburgh made an awesome stop getting by LeGarrette Blount to set up third and eight. Tom Brady threw a 22-yard pass to Chris Hogan. Tom Brady threw a flea flicker. That resulted in another touchdown pass to Chris Hogan. New England took a 17-6 lead. Chris Hogan had 7 receptions, 117 receiving yards, and 2 receiving touchdowns after that drive.
Pittsburgh got the ball back. Le'veon Bell went back on the field, but it was a left groin injury which kept him out for a bit. DeAngelo Williams made a good play. Ben Roethlisberger threw a screen pass to Antonio Brown. Ben Roethlisberger has completed his last ten passes. That's why the Steelers are having success in the first half. Make that twelve completions in a row. Ben Roethlisberger has completed thirteen passes in a row. Both quarterbacks were 15/19 in the second quarter. Cobi Hamilton dropped a touchdown pass which ended Ben Roethlisberger's streak at 13. New England still led 17-6 at the two minute warning.
It was third and eight following the two minute warning. Ben Roethlisberger threw a touchdown pass to Jesse James. James was shy of the touchdown. The play was reviewed and was overturned. Pittsburgh was shy at the goal line. The good news for Pittsburgh is that they were in a first and goal situation.
New England stopped the run. That made it second and goal. Vince Valentine stopped the run. That set up a third and goal situation. Boswell kicked a field goal. New England led 17-9.
New England got the ball back. New England had 1:39 left in the first half to expand their lead. New England had no timeouts left. Tom Brady threw a completion to James White. Brady threw annother short pass to James White. Tom Brady threw a short pass to Danny Amendola. Brady spiked the ball with 22 seconds left in the first half. New England was 6/8 on third down conversions in the first half. Tom Brady threw a completion to Martellus Bennett. The Patriots led 17-9 at halftime. Pittsburgh gets the ball to start the second half.
The first half did not feature a single penalty or turnover. Right now New England leads by 8 points and should adjust heading into the second half.
Pittsburgh had a nice return. Pittsburgh got the ball. Ben Roethlisberger threw it to Sammie Coates who who had a nice return. It was second and six. Williams had a nice spin. New England did a good job stopping the run. That made it third and four. New England did a great job pressuring Ben Roethlisberger. That set up fourth and four with an excellent deflection by Logan Ryan.
Tom Brady got the ball back. Tom Brady threw a short pass to Dion Lewis. That made it second and five. Ryan Shazier committed unnecessary roughness on Julian Edelman. Tom Brady threw a completion to LeGarrette Blount. Blount had a good run. New England started 0/2 on third down conversions. Tom Bray threw another completion to Chris Hogan. Julian Edelman dropped an easy pass.
New England was in a third and ten situation. New England got a field goal, but I honestly think Belichick should have challenged that play. New England took a 20-9 lead.
Pittsburgh got the ball back. DeAngelo Williams was stopped on the run. New England forced an incomplete pass with excellent coverage. That set up a third and eight. Eli Rogers had a huge third down conversion. That kept the Steelers drive alive. New England pushed Williams back for a tackle for a loss. Marcus Gilbert got pushed back at right tackle for the Steelers as well. Second and eleven for Pittsburgh.
Antonio Brown had a first down for Pittsburgh. DeAngelo Williams got 3-rushing yards on that play. New England had excellent coverage. You can argue Ben overthrew that pass though. This set up third and seven for Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh punted the ball. New England took over at their own 11-yard line.
Tom Brady had another opportuny on offense. Pittsburgh did a great job stopping Dion Lewis. That made it second and twelve. Tom Brady threw a completion to James White. Tom Brady threw a first down to Julian Edelman. Tom Brady fired another first down. Dupree had a tackle for a loss to make it second and thirteen. Tom Brady threw a first down to Chris Hogan. LeGarrette Blount carried 7 Steelers defenders. Blount ran it in for a touchdown. That made it a 27-9 game.
en Roethlisberger threw a pass. That catch by Eli Rodgers resulted in a fumble. New England recovers the football. Toom Brady threw a touchdown pass to Julian Edelman. That gave New England a 33-9 lead despite missing the extra point.
Pittsburgh had some momentum at the end of the third quarter. New England led 33-9 after three quarters.
New England stopped Pittsburgh from getting a touchdown thanks to Hamilton running out of bounds. Logan Ryan broke up a pass on fourth down.
New England drove downfield to kick a field goal. New England took a 36-9 lead.
Pittsburgh went for a two point conversion after getting a touchdown in garbage time. New England led 36-17 following that play.
New England dominated on both sides of the ball. Quarterback Tom Brady went 32/42 with 384 passing yards, 3 passing touchdowns, and no interceptions. Wide receiver Chris Hogan had 9 receptions, 180 receiving yards, and 2 receiving touchdowns. Julian Edelman had 8 receptions, 119 receiving yards, and 1 receiving touchdown. Left tackle Nate Soldier and right tackle Marcus Cannon were phenomenal.
On defense this secondary stepped up. Field cornerback Malcolm Butler, boundary cornerback Logan Ryan, nickel cornerback Eric Rowe, strong safety Patrick Chung, and free safety Devin McCourty all stepped up.
This was an excellent team win for New England. New England returns to Houston where they won Super Bowl 38. Last time they played the Carolina Panthers, but in two weeks they will meet the Atlanta Falcons.
3. Pittsburgh Steelers 13-6-0
1. New England Patriots 16-2-0
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