49ers Roll, Chargers Choke, Dolphins Committed to Tua, and Other NFL Bullets

Day one of the NFL playoffs was pretty good, and we’ve got a triple-header on the docket today. But before the Bills and Dolphins get going, let’s talk about the 49ers big win over the Seahawks, and the Chargers choke job against the Jaguars.

  • “We choked,” said Chargers linebacker Kyle Van Noy. Some people joke about the Chargers, “Chargering.” It’s a term coined by fans and pundits to explain some of the heartbreaking moments in the franchise’s history. Saturday night’s meltdown in Jacksonville is near the top of the lengthy list. It’s the largest lead blown in franchise history and the third-largest playoff deficit erased in NFL history.
  • Trevor Lawrence was 10-of-24 for 77 yards, 1 touchdown, four interceptions, and a 24.5 passer rating in the first half. The Chargers led 27-0 with 3:18 left in the second quarter. Over the next 33:18 of game time, the Jaguars went on a 31-3 run. Lawrence completed 18-of-23 passes for 211 yards and three touchdowns. Lawrence had a clutch two-point conversion and a passer rating of 144.5 in the second half.
  • I’ve got a couple of deeper thoughts rolling around my head on this game, but we’ll talk about those tomorrow because I’ve got a triple-header to cover in a little bit.
  • Who caught Trevor Lawrence’s troll job on Twitter last night?
  • In the early game on Saturday, it looked like the Seahawks might have a shot at surprising us in the first half. But after the Seahawks took a 17-16 lead into the half, San Francisco came out playing on a different level as they cruised to a 41-23 win.
  • Brock Purdy was shaky to start but rebounded to put together a remarkable playoff debut. Purdy finished the game with 332 yards, three touchdowns, and a 131.5 passer rating. Purdy is the first rookie quarterback to win a playoff game since Russell Wilson did it in 2012.
  • Christian McCaffrey ripped off a 68-yard run in the first quarter to set up the 49ers’ first touchdown. McCaffrey racked up 119 rushing yards on 15 carries (7.5 YPC) and caught Brock Purdy’s first postseason touchdown pass.
  • McCaffrey shined in his 49ers playoff debut, but he wasn’t alone. Deebo Samuel activated ‘Playoff Deebo’ mode early on Saturday. Samuel racked up 165 yards of total offense and a touchdown, including this 74-yard catch and run for a touchdown:
  • The 49ers feel like the clear favorites in the NFC right now. They’ve won 11 straight, and they’re clicking on all cylinders. The offense cranked out 41 points, their top-ranked scoring defense played excellent (save for two drives), and Brocky Purdy is cooking.
  • The road to the Super Bowl in the NFC technically runs through Philadelphia since the Eagles have the No. 1 seed, but the 49ers look like a machine right now.
  • The Dolphins-Bills game leads off today’s action, but Miami will be without Tua Tagovailoa. Tua has been sidelined since December 26, when he was in the league’s concussion protocol. Tagovailoa has missed multiple games this season due to concussions, but the Dolphins are committed to him regardless of today’s outcome, per Adam Schefter.
  • The Rams are expected to pick up quarterback Matthew Stafford’s option bonus and 2024 salary by the third day of the new league year, per Adam Schefter.
  • Some roster moves for today’s games:
  • Jamaal Williams was fined for his TD dances in the Lions’ victory over the Packers in Week 18. Well worth it, IMO.
  • D.K. Metcalf was also hit with a hefty fine for his exchange with Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey in Week 18.
  • Last night was a tough night to be a goaltender at the United Center:
  • Hey, the Cubs did a thing!
  • written by

    Patrick grew up in Chicago's Bridgeport and Garfield Ridge neighborhoods before moving to the Western Suburbs of Chicago before eventually relocating to the Las Vegas area with his family in 2023. He started with Bleacher Nation in 2021 and has spent time as a Staff Writer and on the Chicago Blackhawks beat. He is currently a writer and editor at Bleacher Nation covering the Chicago Bears and the NFL at large and the author of the Bleacher Nation Newsletter. Patrick is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America (PFWA).

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