History was made last Sunday when the NFC and AFC championship games both went to overtime.
The Rams never led until Greg Zuerlein nailed a 57-yard field goal in the extra session for a 26-23 win over New Orleans at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
The Saints led 23-20 when Wil Lutz made a 31-yard field goal with 1:41 left.
New England topped Kansas City 37-31 at Arrowhead Stadium when Rex Burkhead (41 yards on 12 carries) barreled in from two yards.
Burkhead added a four-yard run with 39 seconds left in the game for a 31-28 lead.
When Zuerlein clubbed a 48-yarder with 15 seconds left it was tied at 23-23.
The Rams (15-3) fell behind 6-0 in the first quarter when Lutz hit a 37-yarder with 10:04 left and a 29-yarder with 7:06 on the clock.
New Orleans (14-4) led 13-0 in the same frame when Drew Brees (26 of 40 for 249 yards and one pick) hit Garrett Griffin (12 yards on two receptions) with a five-yard toss and 1:35 showing.
Zuerlein’s 36-yarder with 9:45 on the ticker in the second and a six-yard run by Todd Gurley (10 yards on four carries) with 23 seconds left in the half cut the lead to 13-10.
The Saints (290 total net yards) bulled ahead 20-10 when Brees hit Taysom Hill with a two-yard toss and 8:34 left in the third, but the Rams (378 total yards) leveled it at 20-20 as Jared Goff (25 of 40 for 297 with one pick) drilled Tyler Higbee (25 yards on four catches) with a one-yard strike and 3:06 left in the third and Zuerlein’s 24-yard boot with 5:03 left in the contest.
The Patriots (524 total yards) muscled ahead 14-0 when Sony Michel (113 yards on 29 rushes) scored on a one-yard run and 6:55 showing in the initial frame and Tom Brady (30 of 46 for 348 yards and two picks) hit Phillip Dorsett with a 29-yard strike as 27 seconds remained in the opening half.
Patrick Mahomes (16 of 31 for 295 yards) unloaded three touchdowns in the second half including a 12-yard strike to Travis Kelce (23 yards on three catches) with 12:56 left in the third that shaved it to 14-7.
Mahomes had a one-yard pass to Damien Williams early in the fourth that trimmed New England’s advantage to 17-14.
Mahomes added a 23-yard throw to Williams with 7:45 left in the match as the Chiefs (290 total yards) shuffled ahead 21-17.
Michel’s 10-yard waltz and 3:32 remaining in the fourth handed New England (13-5) a 24-21 edge.
When Williams (30 yards on 10 carries, 66 yards on five catches) scored on a two-yard burst, the Chiefs (13-5) leaped in front 28-24 with 2:03 left.
Harrison Butker’s 39-yard field goal with eight seconds remaining tied it at 31-31.
Rick Assad has written about sports for the Pasadena Star-News and Los Angeles Times. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.