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49ers “Divisional Round” Notes

January 6, 2012

True Story: I was interviewing the actor Danny Aiello, and spouting some lesser known information about Mr. Aiello. He said, “You know a lot of useless information.”  I noted a character he played  in a movie said that very sentence. He countered “Which movie?” and I did not know the answer. In that spirit, some San Francisco 49ers divisional round playoffs notes.

The Niners will be making their 20th appearance in the divisional round of the NFL playoffs, (only  the Pittsburgh Steelers and Dallas Cowboys have more such appearances ) and for the 15th time the game will be in San Francisco. SF is (12-7) in the divisional round with 15 of the 20 games at venerable Candlestick Park. At least one game, a win vs the Giants in 1981, was played on an extremely muddy field. (I am sure SF coach Jim Harbaugh and the Niners would not mind similar conditions, 30 years later, if the opponent is New Orleans, with their high powered passing attack). Also this will be the 12th time the divisional round game in San Francisco will be played on a Saturday afternoon.

 

This weekend is the 22nd with 4 NFL wild card round games. Next weekend will be the 42nd with 4 divisional round games as that started in 1970, 4 years after the NFL/AFL merger.

Speaking of 1970, this weekend’s Detroit at New Orleans game evokes memories of the November 8th, 1970 game between the two teams which New Orleans won on Tom Dempsey’s 63 yard field goal. Also that same day, in a time 50 or more yard field goals were extremely rare; a Pete Gogolak 54 yard field goal helped the Giants beat Dallas while George Blanda, well into his 40’s at the time, kicked a 50 plus yard field goal as time expired to beat the Cleveland Browns.

Andy B

Candlestick Park

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