It wasn’t easy, but the Atlanta Falcons finally got the playoff monkey off their back. After blowing a 20 point lead and falling behind 28-27 to the Seattle Seahawks with 31 seconds left in regulation, quarterback Matt Ryan, 0-3 in the playoffs in his career coming into the game, responded with two quick passes, the last to veteran tight end Tony Gonzalez to set up the game winning field goal in a 30-28 victory.

The Falcons had been known to be world beaters in the regular season only to go out in one game in the postseason. Few can forget the safety they put up against the New York Giants coming off a first round bye in a 24-2 loss last season. The dirty birds also lost to the Philadelphia Eagles and Arizona Cadinals in one and done fashion and with half a minute to go it looked like de ja vu all over again.

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So now the road to the Super Bowl still has to go through the Georgia Dome in the NFC. The San Francisco 49ers, who looked pretty unstoppable against Green Bay on Saturday, is waiting in the wings.

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