The San Francisco 49ers used a 30-yard field goal by kicker Robbie Gould and a key catch by tight end George Kittle with just seconds remaining to grab a late 48-46 win over the New Orleans Saints on Sunday in a potential NFC Championship preview.
Following a Drew Brees’s fifth touchdown pass of the day that gave New Orleans a 46-45 advantage with under a minute left, San Francisco faced a 4th and 2 from their 33. Then, Jimmy Garoppolo hit Kittle on a 39-yard reception that saw the Pro Bowl tight end carry Saints defenders inside of the 30. A defensive facemask penalty tacked on to the end of the play made Robbie Gould’s game-winning 30-yard field goal much easier.
The back-and-forth battle saw 55 points scored in the first half with the 49ers leading 28-27 at halftime. Both defenses settled in during the third quarter before chaos resumed in the fourth quarter – culminating in a late 49ers victory.
San Francisco improves to 11-2 on the season and for the moment, regain the NFC West lead by a half game over the Seattle Seahawks, who will play on Sunday night against the Los Angeles Rams.
Meanwhile, the NFC South champion Saints drop to 10-3 and fall to the second spot overall in the NFC.
This spectacular game featured a grand total of 12 touchdowns and 10 touchdown passes between Brees, Garoppolo, and believe it or not, 49ers wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders.
Brees finished with 340 yards and five touchdown passes while Garoppolo completed 26 of 35 passes for 349 yards and four touchdowns.
The victory gives San Francisco a head-to-head tiebreaker over the Saints in the race for home-field advantage through the NFC playoffs.
Categories: San Francisco 49ers
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