The NFL playoffs 2013 schedule is down to its final four. On Sunday, the 49ers vs. Falcons and Ravens vs. Patriots games will send two worthy contenders to Super Bowl XLVII. The AFC and NFC Championship games will both be shown live on television. There are some intriguing stories coming into both games including a controversy surrounding a 49ers wide receiver, and the impending retirement of Baltimore Ravens star Ray Lewis.
The live NFL playoffs game featuring the San Francisco 49ers and Atlanta Falcons for the NFC Championship gets going first with Matt Ryan and his Falcons looking to finally get that Super Bowl appearance. The 49ers have been playing with tremendous momentum after recently knocking off the Green Bay Packers. Quarterback Colin Kaepernick has become this post season's young star, much like other quarterbacks have before him. Can he guide his team to the big game? The NFC Championship game will be featured at 3 p.m. EST on FOX. Unfortunately, this game will not be live streaming on the Verizon Wireless network for select customers.
According to a Jan. 19 report from ESPN, the 49ers have become involved in some controversy heading into the matchup though. Their wide receiver Michael Crabtree has voluntarily met with police over an investigation into an alleged sexual assault. The incident reportedly took place last weekend in a hotel after his team's playoff win over Green Bay. Could this possibly take away the overall focus of the team, or will they still manage to be focused enough to grab a win in Atlanta?
The second game of the day will feature one of last year's Super Bowl contenders, the New England Patriots, as they host the hungry Baltimore Ravens. It's Ray Lewis' final season, as the defensive star has announced he will retire once his last NFL game is played. Will that be on Sunday against the Patriots, or will he inspire his team to get to another Super Bowl appearance? New England takes on Baltimore beginning at 6:30 p.m. EST on CBS Sunday evening.
A Jan. 18 report from NPR.org indicates that Tom Brady and the Patriots are currently the favorites of the four remaining teams in terms of which team will win the Super Bowl. While that seems like tough pressure, of the teams still playing on Sunday, the Patriots are the only one who was there in last year's game. Not only that, they've won the big game multiple times in recent history, capturing the trophy in 2002, 2004, and 2005. The Baltimore Ravens, however, have won an NFL title as well, back in 2001. Ray Lewis was the Super Bowl MVP. Ironically, Tom Brady was the MVP a year later in the big game.
Roanoke viewers will be able to watch both games via Cox Cable, with local FOX affiliate station WFXR 8 for the NFC Championship at 3 p.m. EST, and local CBS affiliate WDBJ 7 at 6:30 p.m. for the AFC Championship game.