The second round of the National Football League playoffs concluded Sunday with two more divisional playoffs.
Quarterback Jay Cutler threw for two touchdowns (58 yards to Greg Olsen and 39 to Kellen Davis) and ran for two more (6 and 9 yards respectively) as the Chicago Bears defeated the visiting Seattle Seahawks 35-24 in an NFC divisional playoff game. The Bears will host their archrivals, the Green Bay Packers next Sunday in the NFC Championship Game (12:00 Noon Pacific Time, Fox). It will only be the second playoff encounter in this, the NFL's oldest rivalry (the Bears defeated the Packers 33-14 at home in a Western Division tie-breaking playoff game before defeating the New York Giants 37-9 for the NFL title, also at home). The two NFC North division rivals split their two-game regular-season series, with the Bears winning their home contest 20-17 on September 17 and the Packers, needing a win just to even make the playoffs, winning the rematch on two weeks ago 10-3 at Lambeau Field.
At Foxborough, Massachusetts:
Mark Sanchez completed 16 of 25 passes for 194 yards and three touchdowns (one each to Ladainian Tomlinson, Braylon Edwards, and Santonio Holmes) as the New York Jets knocked off the hosts New England Patriots 28-21 to make it to their second straight AFC Championship game. They will face the Pittsburgh Steelers on the road next Sunday starting at 3:30 PM Pacific Time (CBS). The Jets knocked off the Steelers 22-17 in Pittsburgh on December 19.