San Francisco 49ers running back Raheem Mostert couldn’t be stopped by the Green Bay Packers and, when the damage was done, Mostert racked up 220 rushing yards and four touchdowns to lead the Niners to a 37-20 victory in the NFC Championship.
The 49ers jumped out to a 27-0 lead and thwarted a second-half comeback by Aaron Rodgers and the Packers.
Mostert set an NFL record by rushing for 200-plus yards and four touchdowns in the same playoff game. Only the LA Rams’ Eric Dickerson (248 yards in 1986) rushed for more yards in a single playoff game.
San Francisco quarterback, Jimmy Garoppolo, went 7-for-9 passes on the day for 77 yards and no touchdowns. Two of his pass attempts were caught by Mostert. Jimmy G managed the ball well, and didn’t throw any interceptions behind an offensive line that allowed only one sack. Jimmy G simply handed the ball over to Mostert 29 times, who inflicted serious damage against the Packers in the first half.
3 TDs in the FIRST HALF for Raheem Mostert! 🚨
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) January 20, 2020
Rookie WR Deebo Samuel made several big plays when the Niners called his number. Samuel put up 89 yards, including 43 rushing yards on two carries.
Packers Lose Again in Santa Clara
The 49ers defeated the Packers 37-8 during the regular season. Just like in that game, the Packers fell behind by double digits, and were unable to fight their way out of their big hole.
Rodgers played much better in the NFC Championship, but couldn’t overcome another slow start. He went 31-for-39 for 326 yards and two touchdowns. He was also picked off twice, and lost a fumble.
“We just weren’t very consistent the first half,” said Rodgers. “Made a couple of mistakes personally that hurt us, and kind of let it get away from us.”
Aaron Jones rushed for 56 yards and scored two touchdowns, but the nasty Niners’ defense held him to just 56 rushing yards.
Mostert Takes Over
Mostert has a chip on his shoulder because he was cut by teams before finding a home with the Niners. Still, he didn’t let the business of football deter him from achieving his goal of becoming a full-time running back in the NFL.
“I did have a lot of doubters and naysayers,” said Mostert. “Now I get to actually tell them, ‘Look where I’m at now.’ I never gave up on my dreams.”
Mostert finally got an opportunity to shine with the 49ers. Although he had to split time in a committee that included Tevin Coleman and Matt Brieda, Mostert quickly gained the respect and admiration of his teammates and coaches.
“Raheem’s so fast,” said tackle Joe Staley. “He’s incredibly fast. He’s fearless going through the hole. He has trust in the linemen to block it up. He’s a great running back.”
Once Coleman went down with an injury, Mostert stepped up with one of the most dominating rushing performances in recent memory. He snapped off 160 yards in the first half, including a pair of touchdowns in the second quarter.
“The lanes that we saw and the way he was running we just wanted to keep feeding him,” said head coach Kyle Shanahan. “I know he was feeling it. That wasn’t too hard to see.”
Raheem Mostert. Untouchable.pic.twitter.com/QAfOeMbn9t
— Rotoworld Football (@Rotoworld_FB) January 20, 2020
Mostert finished with 220 yards on the ground, averaging an astounding 7.6 yards per carry.
San Francisco Returns to the Super Bowl
The Niners went from worst to first this season. After winning only four games during the 2018 season, the Niners went 13-3 in the regular season in 2019. They secured the #1 seed in the playoffs and, despite being dubbed as overrated by the majority of the media and fans, the 49ers held off every opponent to win the NFC Championship to secure a berth in the 2020 Super Bowl.
The Niners won five Super Bowl titles during their dominating run from the 1980s into the early 1990s.
The Niners appeared in the Super Bowl in 2012, but lost to the Baltimore Ravens.
According to William Hill, the San Francisco 49ers are even money odds to win the Super Bowl over the favorited Kansas City Chiefs, who took down the AFC Championship.