NFL playoff classic: 49ers beat Saints after furious final five minutes

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The first 55 minutes of today’s playoff game in San Francisco were good, with both defenses holding their own. The last five minutes were as great as offensive football gets.

In the end, the 49ers had won, 36-32.

So how did that final five minutes unfold? First we had Drew Brees hitting Darren Sproles for a 44-yard catch-and-run to the end zone that gave the Saints a 24-23 lead, their first lead of the game — with 4:11 remaining.

Then the 49ers marched down the field, with Alex Smith eventually taking a shotgun snap on a third-and-7, bolting around the left end of the line, getting a couple of great blocks and sprinting into the end zone for a 28-yard touchdown, giving the 49ers a 29-24 lead.

But that wasn’t enough. On the ensuing drive, Drew Brees threw deep to tight end Jimmy Graham, who was well covered but leapt into the air to make the catch anyway, then raced to the end zone for a spectacular 66-yard touchdown that gave the Saints a 32-29 lead.

Think it was done there? Think again. Smith drove the Saints right down the field going 85 yards in seven plays, culminating with a 14-yard touchdown pass to Vernon Davis to make it 36-32, 49ers.

And that did it. An absolutely sensational football game — one of the all-time classics — has the San Francisco 49ers one win away from the Super Bowl.

228 responses to “NFL playoff classic: 49ers beat Saints after furious final five minutes

  1. Who dat? Not dem. Road playoff games are the Saints’ kryptonite. Great game… now let’s see if the Saints fans give the 49ers credit… doubt it.

  2. Alex Smith gets some serious redemption. After years of being labeled a bust, he delivered when it counted most.

  3. At least Brees still has that fraud-like record for yards. Dome teams are soft and dome QBs are just stat guys who can’t perform in the post season.

  4. Who dat !!!

    Who dat !!!

    Who dat !!!

    Who dat !!!

    Who dat !!!

    Bye bye Saints … and your arrogant fans. Enjoy all those fake, rub-it-in records too.

  5. Down goes Frazier! What a game by the Miners! I admit I slept on San Fran all year. Thank you for silencing that Who Day BS for another year. Grab those paper bags Saints fans!

  6. Knew the Saints would come back and go ahead but V Davis made a name for himself today, he had the big plays for SF on the final drive. If they can score like that next week, on to Super Bowl.

  7. Hey, cheer up saints fans.
    At least now Drew Brees can go pad his stats against the play 60 children’s football team in a meaningless game.

    “M-V-P! M-V-P!” lol

  8. I knew I’d be rewarded for putting up with hours of Tony Siragusa’s incoherent ramblings.. What a finish!

  9. The Saints Achilles heel is the NFC West. 0-3 in the last 3 games including two in the playoffs.

    Never that I would use Alex Smith and Clutch in the same sentence but it is well deserved. He kept his composure and led his team down the field. Kudos to him and 49er nation.

  10. The niners looked very strong and Alex smith who far surpassed what anyone thought he could do and I think after that last play that was alot like the t.o. Play if anyone remembers that

  11. The good news for the Saints is that they can get an early start on those player led offseason workouts.

  12. That game was…EPIC.

    49ers deserved to win. They outplayed the Saints for most of the game. Good to see them pull out the W. I always root for underdogs.

    Go Broncos and 9ers!

    Signed- A Bengals fan

  13. Regardless of how the Broncos-Patriots game ends tonight, I’m sure that today Urban Meyer is very proud of his college quarterbacks Alex Smith and Tim Tebow.

  14. Anyone else think Jim HARBAUGH looked lost out there today? His timeouts were awful, totally lucky the SAINTS didn’t score at the end of the 1st half. The 49ERS are going to get spanked by either the PACKERS/GIANTS. I’d bet my life on it.

  15. Green Bay should be afraid of this team. They could give them fits especially if the weather gets iffy up at Lambeau.

  16. I would just like to draw attention to one post:

    danem83 says:
    Jan 13, 2012 9:12 AM
    @nineroutsider read all of my posts I can assure you I’ve forgotten more than you’ll ever know.

    Your problem is you know very little about the Saints and I’ve watched every snap the 49ers and Saints had this season.

    You’ve got more concerns than you realize. I’ve said enough in this post and based on what I’ve said and what you’ve said it’s pretty clear who knows what’s going to happen.

    San Fran averages a touchdown every 7+ trips in the redzone. And Walker is out so good luck beating the best offense in the history of the NFL with field goals.

    Re read my posts you’ll see how much more I know than anyone that’s posted thus far.

    Saints by 11

    _________________________________________

    danem83, I await your reply.

  17. Anyone happy as hell the Saints lost!!!!
    Who dat?
    Who dat?

    HaHa Thank God i don’t have to listen to arrogant bandwagon Saints Fans for another 8 months!!!!!!!

  18. We’re getting two outdoor Championship games next weekend, as it should be. Real football beats that trackmeet Astrodome garbage any day of the week. I was sick of this Saints team anyway and am glad they’re done for the year.

  19. Hey Drew, you still think Alex is a game manager? He managed to send the who dat clowns back to the swamp…

  20. great game saints fans….now go marching home. “fraud,product of the nfc west,overrated,one & done…blah,blah,blah. congrats to all the Faithful…Rejoice !

  21. So you wanna run up the score, huh Peyton?

    Yeah, you’re DONE! Gregg Williams on to St. Louis, and the Saints will be back, but they’ve got to shore up that defense.

  22. So….excuse me…..Seaux, where you at saints fans???? Only the ones who were talking trash all week, of course.

    Hell of a game….Alex Smith – the drive pt. 1

  23. That was an amazing finish to an awesome game. The best part of that game was that Alex Smith won the game for the 49ers not once, but twice. All the people who trashed Alex Smith as recently as an hour ago on this very blog, can eat their words. The saints can have their nice offensive records. We want the trophy. My hat is off to you Alex Smith and to you Niners.

  24. Gregg Williams is rumored to be going to St. Louis.

    Watching that first half, it looked like he had already mentally checked out.

  25. I should point out that pretty much every Saint fan has been very classy. The Saints are a fantastic team who will be competitive for years. It was a great game.

  26. caseyanthonymunoz says:
    Jan 14, 2012 8:19 PM
    At least Brees still has that fraud-like record for yards. Dome teams are soft and dome QBs are just stat guys who can’t perform in the post season.
    ==========
    Balance. Run the ball.

    Karma for running that score up on the Falcons. Good for the Niners. Pack or Giants better watch out.

  27. caseyanthonymunoz says:Jan 14, 2012 8:19 PM

    At least Brees still has that fraud-like record for yards.

    ________________

    dionoil says:Jan 14, 2012 8:21 PM

    You just saw Alex Smith out duel Drew Brees.

    ________________

    And that’s why Aaron Rodgers is the MVP and not Brees. Brees supporters want to point to his greater yardage numbers, but when you protect the football you don’t need 400 yard games. 300 is usually plenty.

    As great as Brees is, he does have a little of the Favre in him. 2 or 3 times a game, he will throw into coverage. Detroit didn’t take advantage. SF did.

  28. There goes the “Experts” theory on a great offense always beats a great run game and a great defense in the playoffs.

    And the other brilliant theory of RB’s are easily replaceable. The Saints run game vanished without Pierre Thomas. Oh, and yeah, how valuable was Frank Gore? Think he’s easily replaceable…… I Think not. Alex Smith was horrible half of the game (2nd and 3rd quarter). But he produced when is counted and you’ve got to give him credit for that.

  29. Wow Saints, you really blow. The refs were handing you that game and you still lose…no penalties?!?

  30. 1) in bathroom @ the moment that winning TD scored. #@#(@(!&@#

    2)Will the Giants please knock off the Pack so we can get them back here, and not have to go to Siberia next Sunday.

    3)Niners Football: TORTURE.

    What a finish.

  31. Congrats to the 9er team. To the 9er fans…

    Y’all are some of the biggest front running bandwagoning fans I’ve ever seen. I’d love to pull for your team but the boatload of awful fans makes it difficult.

    Here’s hoping that GB beats the living snot out of you 🙂

  32. Great game Niners…I’ll admit, I thought we had it on Graham’s TD. I really didn’t think Alex would make that last drive. Congrats.

  33. You were gifted 5 turnovers and an extra week of preparation and still BARELY won that game. Talk your ish, because next week you job to the NFC Champ.

  34. I bet about 80% of sports analysts feel like fools…..A monkey could do their job, Only ppl I saw pick the Niners were Strahan and Sapp.

  35. @stadanko

    “You were gifted 5 turnovers”

    Yeah, the 49ers definitely had nothing to do with those turnovers. They just magically happened on their own.

  36. Congrats to the 49ers…that was indeed one of the best divisional games ever..

    Now, you guys better start looking at the Packer tapes….

  37. Why all the talk about soft dome teams/frauds? The 9ers are a great team, played a great game. The Saints put up 32 on them, got punched in the mouth all game, turned the ball over 4 times, and were more than in it at the end. I don’t think the Saints were exposed. Looked like two great teams out there. Sad to see the Saints lose but somebody had to.

  38. Boy! Saints fans are total cowards!! So much talk from them for the last month or so. Now? Nothing. Show yourself cowards!!

  39. mizzouram says:
    Jan 14, 2012 8:36 PM
    That was the least deserved win in NFL history. The 49ers barely despite having the game handed to the all day.

    Handed to them? They went out and TOOK IT, you arrogant twit. Give the Niners credit instead of making yourself look like a bitter fool.

  40. If only Brees could have thrown more yards… he just needed MORE YARDS… and then he would be the best and would have won the game.

    Side note: 49ers D is scary!

  41. Smith drove the Saints right down the field going 85 yards in seven plays, culminating with a 14-yard touchdown pass to Vernon Davis to make it 36-32, 49ers.

    Since when does Alex Smith play for the saints?? you guys gotta watch that stuff lmao.

  42. satanicxhellxcreature says:
    Jan 14, 2012 8:27 PM
    Geaux heauxm meauxrons

    Awesome dude!!

    As a Ute fan, I’m glad to see Alex Smith do his thing like us Ute fans knew he could. Not a Miners fan, but I want Smith to get a SB!!

  43. ilovefoolsball says: Jan 14, 2012 8:34 PM

    Congrats to the 9er team. To the 9er fans…

    Y’all are some of the biggest front running bandwagoning fans I’ve ever seen. I’d love to pull for your team but the boatload of awful fans makes it difficult.

    Here’s hoping that GB beats the living snot out of you.

    —-

    This from a Saints fan….really….a Saints fan, what team were you a fan of three years ago? I actually believe you may have been a Saints fan before but your team has the biggest bandwagon of all. Guys like JacknTorres who I haven’t seen on here yet today, who have been making statements all week with no substance whatsoever. I myself have been waiting 9 years for this…I have a photo of when I was 5 with a niners sweatshirt on. You are just being Salty…..some fans actually stick by their teams through the rough times. Go 49ers!!!

  44. frankenderek says:
    Jan 14, 2012 8:22 PM
    What was with Vernon crying? You’re a football player damn it. Man up.

    —————————————-

    You’ve clearly never played football before in your life. If you had you would have known how emotional a moment like that actually is. Especially for an overdue talented tight end like Vernon Davis.

  45. Harbaugh > Payton

    Maybe Payton will call harbaugh in preseason next year!

    *****************

    Harbaugh = O Superbowl Championships

    Payton = 1 Superbowl Championships

    Wait till you got some skins on the wall before you start with all that….

  46. caseyanthonymunoz says:Jan 14, 2012 8:19 PM

    At least Brees still has that fraud-like record for yards. Dome teams are soft and dome QBs are just stat guys who can’t perform in the post season.
    __________________________________

    Not a fan of either team, but really, it is hard to blame Brees. He put up 32 points against a vaunted defense, and he brought them back from behind with a TD at the end of the game. What more can you really ask of your QB?

    That the Saints’ defense couldn’t stop the 49ers’ offense in the last minute was the problem.

  47. Wow! What a finish. What a clutch performance by Smth. No game manager now, is he? He made some great throws down the stretch. Not bad for a guy I bet 98% of Niners fans wanted nothing to do with prior to this year.

    But I kid, I kid! That really was a great performance by the Niners on so many levels. They could have folded after the Saints came back from the first half deficit. They could have folded after the first Saints TD at the four minute mark. The could have folded again after the next Saints TD.

    To win after all of that, with so many doubters outside of Niners fans, quite incredible!

    Congrats Niners fans. Enjoy this one.

  48. GREAT GAME! Looks like Alex Smith just earned a pretty decent contract from somebody. Do 49er fans still want him gone? dude has had a different OC every year. Jim Harbaugh is the real deal as HC. Congrats 49ers

  49. Odd game. Brees spent the first half being careless with the football and Alex Smith looked lost for two whole quarters. Then both defenses looked like total crap in the second half.

    9’ers better hope they keep going plus four on turnovers or they have no shot.

  50. Who dat? How about anyone that is outside. Dat’s who.

    Step outside the dome and the Saints just don’t have enough. Just like last year. Period.

  51. This is one of the happiest days of my life. The great Breesus gets sent home a loser. No longer the messiah. Too freaking bad, baghead. See ya! Bye bye aints.
    Please, please, no more Breese!
    No, No, no more Tebow!
    That is my prayer.

  52. When Vernon Davis caught that TD did anyone else immediately think of T.O. in that ’98 playoff game against the Packers? “Owens! Owens! Owens!” they both cried too. Great game!

  53. First off … WOW … What a game! The last quarter was as good as any.

    #1) Saints fans, give the Niners credit.
    #2) Niners fans, stop talking trash and show some class.
    #3) Some talked about the Packers should be afraid. The Packers still need a “W” and the G-men don’t suck either.

    Bottomline: bask in your awesome win, but do it with class. Whomever you play, it should be a good one.

    Go Pack Go

  54. Losing to the Seahawks last year $250, giving rams the first win of their 2011 season $350, getting physically dominated by the NFC west, & the 49ers priceless 🙂

    Guess saints don’t think the niners are in a easy division lol

  55. I’m hoping that the Pack beat the Giants only because the NFC Championship game would not be in Candlestick Park; That place hurts my eyes on HD TV

  56. Jeez, and I thought I was in the minority as being thoroughly fatigued with ‘who dat’ and ‘brees’ and ‘unstoppable’ and’5000 yards’. I feel right at home in this thread!
    Great win 9ers, and and great win for DEFENSIVE FOOTBALL!

  57. stadanko says: Jan 14, 2012 8:35 PM

    You were gifted 5 turnovers and an extra week of preparation and still BARELY won that game. Talk your ish, because next week you job to the NFC Champ.

    ~~~~~~~~

    Gifted? I guess playing tough D and taking the ball away from the other team is a gift….uhh right. The Niners have been doing that every game.

    The real gift was the refs not calling a single penalty on the Saints. Is that even possible? Anyway Bottom line is SCOREBOARD!

    BTW the Packs D is worse than the Saints so I expect another great game…Go Niners.

  58. The previous play to the first baghead ‘TD’ was a fumble, recovered by the 49ers. Unfortunately, that call is not subject to review, but if you look at it, it clearly is a turnover.
    Pity Play.
    That Kitrina thing will eventually wear off. Until then, the bagheads can enjoy their one playoff victory against the pathetic loins.
    Sorry, bagheads.

  59. frankenderek says:
    Jan 14, 2012 8:22 PM
    What was with Vernon crying? You’re a football player damn it. Man up.

    _________________________________________

    Obv you’ve never played a sport in your life…

  60. What a game, 49ers deserve it. Not a fan of either team but What I don’t understand are the 49er fans that are saying “dome team exposed” and things of that nature. It came down to the last snap of the game. Nothing wrong with giving the opponents some credit for a hard fought game.

  61. That was awesome!!! I’m not a fan of Jim Harbaugh personally, but he certainly demonstrates what a difference the right coach can make. Wow … way to turn around a ball club. Love the way they play.

    Expecting a similar good game from the Giants and Packers tomorrow. No matter who wins, the NFC Championship next week should be great football.

  62. greg williams coached the saints defense as if he is already leaving for st louis. what a pathetic defensive performance and coaching effort by the saints

  63. thesportgenius says:
    Jan 14, 2012 8:52 PM
    stadanko says: Jan 14, 2012 8:35 PM

    You were gifted 5 turnovers and an extra week of preparation and still BARELY won that game. Talk your ish, because next week you job to the NFC Champ.

    ================

    Incredible comeback. You know you were thinking of next week the minute Graham had that TD, didnt you?

    LMAO!

  64. Bye Bye Saints Fans..take a seat on the couch next to your Head Coach and Drew Brees. See ya next year!

  65. Wrap your mind around this for a second:

    If Alex Smith wins two more games this year, him and Rodgers will have the same amount of SB rings.

    So much for the bust tag.

  66. Lol! Man some of the comments on her from “loser” fan a team whose team the Saints already SMASHED. Man we put up 472 against the best defense I’ve seen all year long. I’m a Saints and damn proud of it. We lost to the better team today, and I’m not ashamed of it. We played hard and couldnt pull out in the end. Man I bet you wish can I have a team like ours “loser” fan. Again, congrats 9ers.

  67. mikebrownistheworstownerinprosports says:
    Jan 14, 2012 8:24 PM
    That game was…EPIC.

    49ers deserved to win. They outplayed the Saints for most of the game. Good to see them pull out the W. I always root for underdogs.

    Go Broncos and 9ers!

    Signed- A Bengals fan

    ==========
    Yeah, one of the greatest playoff games in a long time.

    Broncos making a game out of it, 14-7, but Beadles got called for unnecessary roughness, they have to show more poise.

  68. ilovefoolsball says:
    Jan 14, 2012 8:34 PM
    Congrats to the 9er team. To the 9er fans…

    Y’all are some of the biggest front running bandwagoning fans I’ve ever seen. I’d love to pull for your team but the boatload of awful fans makes it difficult.

    Here’s hoping that GB beats the living snot out of you
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Only in that swamp, NO, does snot live……..

  69. Smith paid all his dues (for nothing he did) and now it’s time for him to win. I am so happy for him. Best of luck in the Conference Championship!

  70. I’ve been a Niner fan since 1957, and that is one of the greatest playoff games I have ever seen. The Saints are just an awesome team – great, great offense and real good defense. It’s obvious why their fans are so dedicated. But to see Alex Smith take the team on his back with 1:37 to go and do what he did and to see Davis make those plays – unbelievable!

    Those turnovers were not gifts. The Niners have been doing that all season. This Niners defense has to be in the same conversation with the great Ravens and Steelers defenses and it’s definitely in the same league with the great Niners defenses of the 80’s. It’s been quite a while since we Niner fans have had this feeling and it feels great!

  71. @mizzouram

    The Saints, despite their OLinemen wrap tackling Justin Smith alone at least 3 times, were called for zero penalties through 60+ pass attempts, and it was the Niners who got the game handed to them??

  72. Who Dat. Who Dat they say goin beat them Saints. 49ers done beat them saints. Show the 49ers respect now they deserve it both teams played a hell of a game and Alex smith deserved this win with that 4th quarter performance.
    #Bleed Red & Gold!!!

  73. babar61 says:
    Jan 14, 2012 8:55 PM
    What a game, 49ers deserve it. Not a fan of either team but What I don’t understand are the 49er fans that are saying “dome team exposed” and things of that nature. It came down to the last snap of the game. Nothing wrong with giving the opponents some credit for a hard fought game.

    0==========================

    The fact they ran up the score v. the Falcons to get that record for Brees didnt sit well with a lot of people.

    Everyone had the Saints running over the Niners and they were beaten. It couldve been much bigger if the offense wasnt so inept.

  74. miamisaint3255 says:Jan 13, 2012 7:08 PM

    Yes, 30th ranked schedule. A good team will win most of those games, especially when so well coached. But the Saints are a great team, playing as hot as a team has been in recent years heading into the playoffs. It is just unfortunate the niners had to face the Saints in their first playoff game in years.

    Normally the niners would have the emotional edge at least, being the underdog in their home stadium, but Saints are tired of hearing about the myth that they can’t right now win on grass. Saints have a chip on their shoulder and will come out flying in this game.
    __________________________________

    whodat2 says:Jan 13, 2012 5:22 PM

    In other news….Besides the Saints offense rolling along….the defense will stop Gore and will punish Alex Smith on every play……Harper up the middle delivers a knock out sack fumble! Who dat and Roll Tide Roll!
    __________________________________

    kingokra says:Jan 13, 2012 6:19 PM

    Hmmm…2011 NFL Strength of Schedule:
    Saints tied for 13th toughest
    49ers 30th……….30th!!!!!
    49er fans, I’d would introduce you to a nice couple, but I think you already know them- Mr. Smoke and Ms. Mirrors.

    Saints roll 38-20.
    __________________________________

    favresweiner says:Jan 13, 2012 4:58 PM

    49ers cant score 41 points like the Saints. But the Saints wont score 41 points against the 9ers.

    The 9ers allow the least points per game (14)
    They have the number 1 rushing defense.
    Best turnover diferential.

    The Saints average 41 points in the Super Dome. But only 27 on the road. They only scored 21 against the Rams, and 20 against the Bucs (both losses). If they could only put up that many points against those teams, what will happen when they play the team who allows the LEAST POINTS PER GAME?
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    So…..we should expect very little activity here until next fall from the aforementioned prognosticators listed above…?

    Thought so.

  75. Love that a team that can stuff the run and pound the rock won today, I can’t even stand it when my Bolts throw it forty times a game. Thank 9ers, for not playing football like a seven on seven drill.

  76. trbowman says: “So there’s no way the Alex Smith/Aaron Rodgers storyline doesn’t happen now, right?”

    Sure there is, if Rodgers and the Packers lose to Eli’s Giants.

  77. For all you aints Fans with your fake indoor areana league team!!! Eat a big one!!!! Alex showed you how a REAL qb rolls in the clutch!!! NINER NATION RISES AGAIN!!!

  78. Harbaugh > Payton

    Maybe Payton will call harbaugh in preseason next year!

    *****************

    Harbaugh = O Superbowl Championships

    Payton = 1 Superbowl Championships

    Wait till you got some skins on the wall before you start with all that….
    ——————–

    Payton’s Superbowl win is yesterdays news.
    Head to head harbaugh wins.

    If you wanna talk about skins on the wall…well we have 5 Lombardi trophies in Santa Clara. Come take a look

  79. To all the real NO fans, great game and congrats on a fine season. To all the band wagon clowns who came here and ran their mouths, HOO NEXT? Don’t break your leg jumping off that stoopid HOO DAT Express.

    One and done huh? I wonder who’s happier right now? Drew Breeze and his record passing season, or Alex Smith, the QB HOO “managed” to put the team on his back and advance his team to the NFC Title game?

    Like I said before, Alex has a chance to make history here. I down 2 to go. Still doubting the 9ers ppl? Got a kick out of watching Howie Long and Jimmy Johnson trying to wrap their heads around the result.

  80. I love that a you bagheads are soooo hush!!!! Mr.brees couldn’t pull it off on grass huh? 0-5 away In the playoffs!! Frauds you are frauds you will always be!!!

  81. Funny how there are still haters. Unreal. Best fourth quarter I have ever seen. So proud of the Niners; last year they were 6-10 and now they are in the nfc chanpionship.

    @boisestwhodat and @jackntorres…
    Where you guys at? Who dat? The Niners dat!

    For the classy Saints fans, great game. These two teams just participated in an instant classic!

  82. I really can’t believe how dumb the Saints haters are. Really, were the Saints that bad? I mean they put up 32 points on the best all-around defense in football. So clearly Brees isn’t a fraud, and that will be even more clear after San Fran does the same thing to Rodgers. The Saints do need some better play on the defensive side of the Ball, but who cares when your offense can score at will. It came down to one team making more Game-Changing plays than the other. Both teams deserved to win, and the best team did, simple as that.

  83. bobhk says:
    Jan 14, 2012 9:10 PM
    If you wanna talk about skins on the wall…well we have 5 Lombardi trophies in Santa Clara. Come take a look

    Well said. You have to understand, some “fans” around here seem to think the NFL started a couple years ago.

    If GB doesn’t get it this year, I’m rooting for SF all the way. I admired them in the 80s and 90s over the brash and stuck up Dallas Cowboys. I also admire that Harbaugh didn’t gut the team when he came in. He realizes you have a much better chance at winning if you allow a team to gel.

  84. Saints fans should run Gregg Williams out of town after that defenseless performance. Dr Heat = Dr Choke

  85. kingaldon99 says:
    Jan 14, 2012 9:09 PM
    For all you aints Fans with your fake indoor areana league team!!! Eat a big one!!!! Alex showed you how a REAL qb rolls in the clutch!!! NINER NATION RISES AGAIN!!!

    Man what are you talking? I QB rolled in the clutch also? Sometimes I really believe some people don’t watch the game. And again congrats to the 9ers.

  86. To the respectful Saints fans it was a great game regardless and I thank you for being classy leading to and after this thriller in the Bay.

    To the Saints fans who talked garbage all week and then are still making excuses……..We Dat! Who’s got it better than us? NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOBODY!

  87. Go back to your dome Drew. Marino is the best there was, the best there ever will be!

    ********************

    Newsflash….

    There is a guy named Tom Brady…

    He’s better than Marino

    And yes, I’m old enough….I saw Marino play

  88. If you wanna talk about skins on the wall…well we have 5 Lombardi trophies in Santa Clara. Come take a look

    ********************

    And Harbaugh coached how many of those Super bowl winning 49ers teams?

    Exactly…..none

    But I’m man enough to give props on his win today against Payton…

  89. As a Niners fan, I would just like to say that the Saints are a classy organization with classy fans, and you guys played a great game today. Who am I kidding? Hahahaha, the Saints fans are the biggest group of scumbags in PFT’s comments, and I couldn’t be happier. I bet the Saints and their fans are relieved that they don’t play in the NFC West, because they would never be able to win the division. Who’s got it better than us?

  90. Saints cornerback Jenkins can’t cover or tackle.They should throw a cardboard cut out of Jenkins it would do a better job.

  91. bobhk says:
    Payton’s Superbowl win is yesterdays news.
    Head to head harbaugh wins.

    If you wanna talk about skins on the wall…well we have 5 Lombardi trophies in Santa Clara. Come take a look
    _______________________________

    bobhk, I’ll give you the credit your team deserves for the great win today, but you and Harbaugh aren’t there yet. You have 2 more BIG games left for that.
    As for as your 5 Lombardi’s, whose talking about yesterdays new now???

  92. Fans of the Saints, a team that 2 years ago became a part of the championship club that includes the 49ers as well, really wanted this victory over their former division rivals.

    Today in the first playoff game between these 2 teams, the 49ers added to their bragging rights over the Saints franchise.

    Results on the field are louder than chants.

  93. For the Saints fans who have been classy tonight and through the last week, I give you tremendous thanks. To the rest, I’m only gonna demonstrate my victory chant once.
    Who’s got it better than us? Nobody…’specially not no Who Dat nation.
    Oh…..and the Saints go marching home.

  94. @domehead

    You can’t bring up something in the past and disregard a counterpoint that involves the past.

    And here is a more recent stat.

    In games that matter:
    Jim Harbaugh: 1
    Sean Payton: 0

  95. I bet about 80% of sports analysts feel like fools…..A monkey could do their job, Only ppl I saw pick the Niners were Strahan and Sapp.

    ***************

    My thoughts exactly…

    Ever notice Peter King is wrong about 90 percent of the time….and all he ever talks about is coffee and his daughters volleyball team

  96. discosucs2005 says:
    danem83, I await your reply.
    ——————————————————–
    Classic, classic post!

    danem83, where you at, son??????

  97. First off I want to congratulate the saints on a great season. drew Brees is a phenomenal QB, and is a class act. It is nice to see that defense is still the key to winning in this league. Also to the people on this board saying how lucky the niners were to get 5 turnovers, give it a rest. The niners have won all year by winning the turnover battle. They controlled field position and played solid defense. I thought that was the point of the game. Alex Smith was clutch. Ice water in his veins the last 2 drives. Just like that final drive against Detroit. At some point the haters will have to give this team some credit. 5-1 against this years playoff teams: NO, Pit, Cin, NYG, Det. Lost to Bal. That’s the mark of a solid team. but I’m sure they were all lucky wins also. Go back to playing madden haters and enjoy the offseason. Boo hoo. Sniff sniff.

  98. Wow … Would it still be a great game if the Saints win?
    @billb49…
    Thanks for showing a little class after a good win.
    Congrats Niners for a good game…
    There’s an old saying that goes like this “be careful how you treat people when you’re on top because these are the same people you’ll see on your way down.”
    @Deb… At least you are 1-1 this year…lol. As for myself I know won’t be disappointed again for at least another eight months, so we’ll see your guys next year.

  99. Im a huge 9er fan but man some of you guys need to calm down your making us look bad. It was a great game and breezy put up close to 500 yards so the the dome thing is not relevent. It turned into a shoot out that we came out ontop of great game both teams

  100. To the obnoxious and uneducated LSU fans who also follow the Saints… thanks for giving people a reason for thinking all Saints fans are classless.

    Go back to your rigs offshore.

  101. Payton’s Superbowl win is yesterdays news.
    Head to head harbaugh wins.

    If you wanna talk about skins on the wall…well we have 5 Lombardi trophies in Santa Clara. Come take a look
    _______________________________

    bobhk, I’ll give you the credit your team deserves for the great win today, but you and Harbaugh aren’t there yet. You have 2 more BIG games left for that.
    As for as your 5 Lombardi’s, whose talking about yesterdays new now???
    ————
    Thanks for the credit but there were plenty of obnoxious saints fans here till before the game.

    If you want to talk about yesterday we have 5 trophies and if you talk about today niners are advancing and the saints are going home.

    For the record I like brees and saints….

  102. boisestatewhodat says:
    Jan 4, 2012 11:13 AM
    They’re not the same team…the Saints have a defense and neither the Pats or Packers do…Saints will win each of their 3 playoff games by more than 10 points…you’ll see soon enough.
    _______________________________
    I was really hoping my team would get to put crap like this to an end but alas the Aints were even worse than we all thought. Suc it boisestatewhodat! You are a fan of the two lamest teams ever.

  103. Wow! Only thing better than seeing the Saints get beat 100 to zero is a miracle heartbreak touchdown! couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch.

    Ya’ll are welcome to come over to Atlanta and have some beer and nachos and watch the playoffs from the couch caquse the season is over! All equal now witrh a new season coming starting 0-0.

  104. dionoil says:Jan 14, 2012 8:21 PM

    You just saw Alex Smith out duel Drew Brees.

    – – – – – –

    I just thought it should be stated again. Alex freaking Smith!!

  105. java49 says: Jan 14, 2012 8:28 PM

    Hey Drew, you still think Alex is a game manager? He managed to send the who dat clowns back to the swamp…

    ___________________________________________

    Actually gotta defend Drew here. He never said such a thing and neither did any of the Saints organization for that matter. They gave him high praise. Also Drew and Alex often train together in San Diego quite often. Crazy those things called facts huh? Really the only team that ran their mouths a lot towards Alex and said he couldn’t beat them was the Giants.

  106. For anybody old enough to remember, the Aints fans used to put bags over their heads because they were embarrassed by their team. New Orleans used to in the same division as the 49ers. How many division titles did the aints win?

  107. frankenderek says:
    Jan 14, 2012 8:22 PM
    What was with Vernon crying? You’re a football player damn it. Man up.

    ———————

    dude, come on. It happens. I cried when my team won the local fat guy bar league softball championship. This guy just won one of the most spectacular football game ever played.

  108. To bobhk,
    Sorry if my comments sounded a little snotty, but that was a tough loss (in addition to all those other one’s you hung on us in the 90’s). And I understand some of the Who Dat’s can get somewhat obnoxious, but not all of us.
    For the record, I’m not a Niner hater and kind of miss our old NFC West rivalry.
    Sincerely, good luck going forward in the playoffs.
    Domehead

  109. Is it too much to ask that at least one thread not be littered with the ubiquitous references to “KARMA”? Why, oh why, does everyone always have to say “karma”?

  110. The ones celebrating are the folks in Green Bay. Although the 49ers did well today, the road to the Super Bowl just got easier.

  111. As a long time Saints fan, I think Ive seen this happen at Candlestick before… Saints score to take the led late then here come #16…. Game ova! Memories… Wow! I’m still amazed. Wait to go Alex Smith, way to silence your critics! My Saints will be back next season and remember this… the Superbowl is in the Dome for ’13, talk about motivation to make history.

  112. @Tom Paine “The ones celebrating are the folks in Green Bay. Although the 49ers did well today, the road to the Super Bowl just got easier.”

    Are you kidding? Green Bay is essentially New Orleans without the defense. After what San Fran did to the Saints, Green Bay and the G Men do not have an easy road if they win.

  113. How dare you talk bad about the Saints!!! Don’t you guys know there was a hurricane in NO 7 years ago? This is just heartbreaking. SARCASM

    I love watching the Saints lose. No more Katrina references; no more Brees is God talk; and most importantly, I don’t need to look at that sh*t eating, smug look on Payton’s face until next season.

  114. @thecrazyasianinseccountry …

    Yes, my Tide took the sting out of my Steelers losing. 😀 You’re a great sport!! Looking forward to battling it out again next year!!

  115. mizzouram says: Jan 14, 2012 8:36 PM

    That was the least deserved win in NFL history. The 49ers barely despite having the game handed to the all day.

    No that would be when the Saint’s “beat” the Vikings in the championship game a few years back.

  116. Classic game. 49’ers deserve a lot of credit. But it pains me to see trash talk especially when it is about Drew Brees who is the epitome of class and selfless to a fault. I really don’t understand the hate from 49’er fans because of all the glory years you had. It really makes me want to give up on all sports. Remember this, too. Only one team wins the tournament, and everyone else is a loser. Celebrate now, but if you lose, you will be forgotten too.

  117. johnnyshore says:Jan 14, 2012 11:01 PM

    @Tom Paine “The ones celebrating are the folks in Green Bay. Although the 49ers did well today, the road to the Super Bowl just got easier.”

    Are you kidding? Green Bay is essentially New Orleans without the defense. After what San Fran did to the Saints, Green Bay and the G Men do not have an easy road if they win.
    __________________________________

    Those same Packers that are #1 with most INTs in the league this year…and where are the Saints at….#28? The same Packers D that is in the top 5 in the league in red zone defense this year? This may shock you, but if these ratings included a strength of schedule factor, maybe they’d be a little more even. The Niners have one of the easiest schedules in football this year….and that NFC West crown is nothing to be bragging about. There isn’t a Saints defensive player that can carry Charles Woodson’s jock. Your mouth is writing checks the 9ers can’t cash, and Aaron Rodgers doesn’t do a Favre impersonation a few times a game like Brees does and just did. Something tells me that single digits will play a little havoc on the mindset of the Niners and Alex Smith’s exposed fingers next week, should the Pack get past the Giants tomorrow. If not, the Niners cruise to a Super Bowl berth, because they will destroy those frauds from the Big Apple.

  118. For the 49ERS fans that think the PACKERS are just the SAINTS w/o a defense (btw, the PACKERS beat the SAINTS… so what does that say about your theory), let me remind you that the PACKERS offense plays outdoors and on just as bad a surface as the 49ERS. The SAINTS were frauds outdoors and EVERYONE knew it. Keep believing that you have a chance. If not the PACKERS, the GIANTS will thump you.

  119. Full disclosure: I am 100% a Niners fan.

    I have two comments mostly in response to the comments I have read on this article.

    #1 – Don’t diss the Saints’ records this year. No one in the NFL will ever set an All-Time Record without accumulating some stats in garbage time. What the Saints offense did this year was truly amazing.

    #2 – Don’t diss VD for crying after the catch. No one but a Niners fan can possibly understand everything that he/the whole team has gone through over the past decade. Those tears were a combination of relief, joy and retribution. I was watching the game with a great friend of mine who is a long time Niners fan, he teared up at the end of the game and he didn’t have anywhere near as much invested/riding on this game as VD and the rest of the veterans on that team did. That was an extremely emotional game for anyone associated with the Niners’ organization.

    As far as the game goes…. it was without a doubt the greatest, most exciting football game I have ever watched. If Alex Smith ever figures out how to play an entire game like it’s the final two minutes, I am convinced he can get into the conversation of one of the top 5 or so QBs in the game. GO NINERS!

  120. Harbaugh = O Superbowl Championships

    Payton = 1 Superbowl Championships

    Wait till you got some skins on the wall before you start with all that….

    ******************************************

    I Hate to be the voice of reason but Harbaugh has not yet had a chance to win(or lose) a SB this is his first year coaching in the NFL……but he might just get one who knows…..great game and for the cool Saints fans on this board. Drew B. is a stud dome or no dome dude can flat out throw the rock..but today was our day what a game

  121. Brees threw 63 passing attempts and no offense holding calls penalties were called today. Wait between this game and the detroit vs NOLA’s game last week, Brees threw 106 attempts with NO OFFENSIVE HOLDING CALLS. Who did the NFL want to win for the ratings?

  122. Go back to your dome Drew. Marino is the best there was, the best there ever will be!

    ********************

    Newsflash….

    There is a guy named Tom Brady…

    He’s better than Marino

    And yes, I’m old enough….I saw Marino play
    ————-
    Sorry. That guy is Joe cool. Never lost in the superbowl and has been flawless in the big game.
    Brady is in top 10 perhaps.

  123. kingcarlbanks says:
    Jan 14, 2012 8:20 PM
    Down goes Frazier! What a game by the Miners! I admit I slept on San Fran all year. Thank you for silencing that Who Day BS for another year. Grab those paper bags Saints fans!

    kingcarl,
    1.) Niners
    2.) Who Dat
    3.) Super Bowl win>2 playoff appearances after… We’ve lost more playoff games than your team has been in since 2000…I ll start writing some stats on my paper bag…

    Good luck Alex…as a Saints fan, I am rooting for you.

  124. Let’s have at it:

    ——————–
    brettto73 says:
    Jan 10, 2012 1:13 PM
    @Nevis

    I am going to bookmark this and blow away all of your points after the game this weekend.

    ——————–

    I’ll wait, brettto. All my points came to fruition, admit defeat.

  125. It was joetoronto! “does anyone, other than 49er fans, actually give the 49ers any chance in this game”….. paging joetoronto

  126. What a game! Alex Smith blew my mind. I have supported the guy over the years, but never thought he could do something like that, epecially with no time.

    Congrats to the Saints on a great season and playing one hell of a football game. No Saint fan should have their heads hung tonight. Even though I find a majority of Saints fans to be extremely arrogant (the most arrogant actually), 9er fans should ease up…this game easily could have gone the other way. As stupid as this sounds, don’t piss of the football gods!

    No disrepect to the Giants and they have a chance, I look forward to going to Lambeau for the NFC Championship game. The 9ers and the Packers have unfinished business as the 9ers owe them a playoff loss or 4. The Pack are like the Cowboys to me (except I respect the Pack)…I still hate them, even after all these years.

  127. Great day to be a football fan.

    There is clearly a backlash against the Saints – its not all their fault though their “fans” who were spouting off around PFT and “invading” 49er fan message boards do them no favors. The media, despite having an unprecedented amount of time to cover the NFL, seem to cover the same handful of topics. And when they do cover the same topics they do so by slobbering all over the story of the week. So we get a heavy dose of former players, most of which are there for their braggadacio and not their Xs and Os all saying the exact same thing.

    It was interesting to still see the NFL Network with stories covering the Eagles and Jets, albeit in juxtaposition to the 49ers this weekend. In that regard, while I enjoy a lot of the NFL Network’s programming it is criminal how little they actually talk about football and much of their programming is clustered into a small “canon” of NFL topics (Patriots, Tebow, Brees, Packers, NY teams, Peyton Manning, Eagles) with only a handful of shows like Playbook actually looking at the games with a critical eye.

    In that regard, the 49ers were very “under-covered” and Harbaugh likes it that way. I’m a fan, but I think its very hard to not like this team and the motivational strategies that Harbaugh has used throughout the year. He’s put together a team based on how we all grew up knowing and loving and playing football. And he’s done so at a time when the entire league has been “madden”-ized to make the NFL an arena league. I find it hard to believe anyone who has been involved in the game at any level and any age wouldn’t have a special place in their heart for a team like SF. I know they may not resonate as well with the last decade of “new” NFL dominance and the mainstream “pink-jersey-fication” of the game but so be it.

    The 49ers have been the biggest unknown commodity in the league this year. They coasted to an division title early and they have a coach who puts a paramount importance on secrecy. Despite the talk of being a “run-first” team, watching every snap but not knowing the numbers, this team shifted towards a more ball control west coast passing attack around the time the “game manager” issue came up. Gore also got injured around then and the team had enough of a lead in the division it could work in improving its passing attack. Some thought it was Harbaugh getting offended but realistically he spent all those games getting Alex throwing the ball to get to last night. Because in the playoffs you can’t always settle for field goals and sometimes you have to lead back-to-back 80+ yard drives with 4 minutes left. OK even Harbaugh probably didn’t foresee that coming.

    The 49ers offense has been underrated all year in large part because they always have good field position and they struggled in the red zone. And they were usually leading. So they were consistently content to get the ball at midfield, get a 20 yard drive together and kick another field goal. This was not a team focused on stats. This was also a team that on a very small percentage of drives “needed” a touchdown. They trailed by more than a field goal only a handful of times. The Philly game comes to mind. And so the offense to me was always full of potential but untested.

    In the back of my head this year I always felt that Harbaugh was holding Alex back waiting to unleash him only when he had to. My optimism meant I fully expected a late drive and a field goal to win the game. But I expected easy check down passes. Maybe a screen. And a David Akers game. I did not expect Alex Smith to man up on this stage. I’ve doubted him off-and-on for years but always cheered for his “story”.

    The Saints are a very, very good team. They were the hottest team in the playoffs until they got punched in the mouth – and guess what – they got back up and fought the 49ers till the bitter end. That’s impressive. I did not expect that. And their defense played better than anticipated.
    But they also played a team whose defense put on a highlight real performance the likes of which we haven’t seen in the NFL in a long time. Talk about pure violence.

  128. As a Packer fan, I must admit, I’m sort of relieved now, with the Saints out. That team is capable of anything, anyday.

    While we still have the Giants to play (and obviously I expect my team to win), I’m wondering if playing the 49ers os better or worse for the Pack.

    On one side, to beat the Saints, all you have to do is outscore Brees (sounds simple, doesn’t it??), and we’ve done that already this season… Now, to beat the 49ers, we have to solve that D… Man, that D is tough!!!

    Congrats for the win – VERY deserved – and hopefully we’ll see ya next week in Lambeau!!!

  129. Those same Packers that are #1 with most INTs in the league this year…and where are the Saints at….#28? The same Packers D that is in the top 5 in the league in red zone defense this year? This may shock you, but if these ratings included a strength of schedule factor, maybe they’d be a little more even. The Niners have one of the easiest schedules in football this year….and that NFC West crown is nothing to be bragging about. There isn’t a Saints defensive player that can carry Charles Woodson’s jock. Your mouth is writing checks the 9ers can’t cash, and Aaron Rodgers doesn’t do a Favre impersonation a few times a game like Brees does and just did. Something tells me that single digits will play a little havoc on the mindset of the Niners and Alex Smith’s exposed fingers next week, should the Pack get past the Giants tomorrow. If not, the Niners cruise to a Super Bowl berth, because they will destroy those frauds from the Big Apple.

    Funny seeing a Packer fan talk about strength of schedule.

  130. packerhater says:Jan 15, 2012 12:29 PM

    Those same Packers that are #1 with most INTs in the league this year…and where are the Saints at….#28? The same Packers D that is in the top 5 in the league in red zone defense this year? This may shock you, but if these ratings included a strength of schedule factor, maybe they’d be a little more even. The Niners have one of the easiest schedules in football this year….and that NFC West crown is nothing to be bragging about. There isn’t a Saints defensive player that can carry Charles Woodson’s jock. Your mouth is writing checks the 9ers can’t cash, and Aaron Rodgers doesn’t do a Favre impersonation a few times a game like Brees does and just did. Something tells me that single digits will play a little havoc on the mindset of the Niners and Alex Smith’s exposed fingers next week, should the Pack get past the Giants tomorrow. If not, the Niners cruise to a Super Bowl berth, because they will destroy those frauds from the Big Apple.

    Funny seeing a Packer fan talk about strength of schedule.
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    2011 NFL Strength of Schedule

    08/25/2011 1:07 AM –

    A look at the most difficult schedules in 2011 based on opponents’ 2010 record.

    Team Combined (W-L-T) Record & Percentage
    1. Carolina Panthers 142-114-0 .555
    2. Buffalo Bills 137-119-0 .535
    3t. New York Jets* 133-123-0 .520
    3t. Indianapolis Colts* 133-123-0 .520
    3t. Jacksonville Jaguars 133-123-0 .520
    3t. Kansas City Chiefs* 133-123-0 .520
    3t. San Diego Chargers 133-133-0 .520
    3t. Denver Broncos 133-123-0 .520
    3t. Detroit Lions 133-123-0 .520
    10t. Miami Dolphins 132-124-0 .516
    10t. Houston Texans 132-124-0 .516
    10t. Minnesota Vikings 132-124-0 .516
    13t. Green Bay Packers* 130-126-0 .508
    13t. New Orleans Saints* 130-126-0 .508
    15t. New England Patriots* 129-127-0 .504
    15t. Philadelphia Eagles* 129-127-0 .504
    15t. Dallas Cowboys 129-127-0 .504
    18. Tampa Bay Buccaneers 127-129-0 .496
    19t. Cleveland Browns 126-130-0 .492
    19t. Oakland Raiders 126-130-0 .492
    19t. New York Giants 126-130-0 .492
    19t. Atlanta Falcons* 126-130-0 .492
    23t. Tennessee Titans 125-131-0 .488
    23t. Chicago Bears* 125-131-0 .488
    23t. Seattle Seahawks* 125-131-0 .488
    26. St. Louis Rams 122-134-0 .477
    27t. Pittsburgh Steelers* 121-135-0 .473
    27t. Cincinnati Bengals 121-135-0 .473
    27t. Washington Redskins 121-135-0 .473
    30. San Francisco 49ers 119-137-0 .465
    31. Baltimore Ravens* 117-139-0 .457
    32. Arizona Cardinals 113-143-0 .441

    Tougher than any other team still in the playoffs right now…what else you got???

    Donkeys…I tell you.

  131. Remember folks, Giants fans are second only to Philly fans in the “illiterate crackhead” category.

    49ers end Eli’s career in the first quarter and win easily.

    Giants are scum. Sub-human filth. Always have been.

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