49ers shut down Packers to face Chiefs in Miami

The championship will be played Feb. 2 in Miami

It is down to the last two teams standing.

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It has been quite a remarkable turnaround for the San Francisco 49ers.

Raheem Mostert rushed for 220 yards and four touchdowns to make quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo mostly a spectator, Nick Bosa harassed Aaron Rodgers from the start and the 49ers beat the Green Bay Packers 37-20 for the NFC championship on Sunday.

San Francisco 49ers running back Raheem Mostert, right, celebrates his touchdown with quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo during NFC Championship game against the Packers Sunday, Jan. 19, 2020, in Santa Clara, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

The 49ers (15-3) advanced for the first time in  seven years and will play the Kansas City Chiefs in two weeks in Miami for the championship.

In Kansas City, Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes did his usual superb job passing, but it was his 27-yard tap dance down the left sideline late in the first half that gave the Chiefs their first lead.


From there, they outran the run-oriented Tennessee Titans and star back Derrick Henry for a 35-24 victory Sunday in the AFC Championship.

Kansas City Chiefs' Patrick Mahomes (15) celebrates a touchdown pass with Eric Fisher (72) and Mitchell Schwartz (71) during AFC Championship game against the Titans Sunday, Jan. 19, 2020, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Ed Zurga)

In San Francisco, “Our team, it’s incredible to be a part of,” Garoppolo said. "We can win so many different ways. Raheem, those guys up front, the tight ends obviously were just dominating tonight. It was fun".

The Niners won just 10 games in the first two seasons under coach Kyle Shanahan and general manager John Lynch, going 4-12 last season after Garoppolo went down with a season-ending knee injury in Week 3.

Now, San Francisco is one of two teams remaining after delivering a second thorough beating of the season to Rodgers and the Packers (14-4).

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) is sacked by San Francisco 49ers defensive end Nick Bosa (97) during the NFC Championship Sunday, Jan. 19, 2020, in Santa Clara, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

Bosa, the prize for last year's rough season as the No. 2 overall pick, helped set the tone when he ended Green Bay's second drive of the game with a 13-yard sack of Rodgers.


Mostert, a former special teams standout, did much of the rest in a remarkable redemption story for a former surfer who was cut seven times and carried the ball only eight times in his first three seasons in the NFL.

But he has become a key part of the NFC's top team this year, leading the Niners with 772 yards rushing in the regular season and delivering a performance for the ages in the NFC title game.

He had the second-most yards rushing in a playoff game to Eric Dickerson's 248 for the Rams on Jan. 4, 1986, and was the first player to rush for at least four TDs and 200 yards in a playoff game.

“You know, honestly, I just woke up like it was any other game," Mostert said. "It was one of those things where hey, once we all get in a groove, we’re just going to keep it riding, keep it going and that’s what we did.”

He got started when he burst 36 yards on a third-and-8 trap play to open the scoring on San Francisco's second drive and kept ripping off long runs behind impressive blocking.


He added TD runs of 9 and 18 yards in the second quarter and had 160 yards rushing at the half, becoming the only player in NFL history to rush for at least 150 yards and three TDs in the first half of a playoff game.

Mostert added a 22-yard TD run in the third quarter.

“It was working,” Shanahan said of the run-heavy approach. "If it’s working, you stay with it. Our guys are running so hard, our O-line coming off the ball, our backs, all 11 of our guys, as they’ve been all year. The guys fought hard as heck, we were going to put it all in their hands.”

Rodgers and the Packers were unable to match that performance as they got overwhelmed by San Francisco's dominant front for a second time this season.

Rodgers had a career-low 3.15 yards per attempt in a 37-8 loss here back in November and wasn't much better in the first half of the rematch.


He lost a snap from center to end Green Bay's only promising drive of the half, threw an interception to Emmanuel Mosely late in the half and didn't convert his first third down of the season against the Niners until connecting on a 6-yard pass to Aaron Jones on the opening drive of the second quarter for his first third-down conversion in 18 attempts this season against the Niners.

Rodgers capped that drive with a 9-yard pass to Jones, but the game was too far out of hand by that point.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.