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James Lang-USA TODAY Sports
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Follow live: Hogan's second TD increases Pats' lead

Tom Brady connected with Chris Hogan again, this time for a 34-yard touchdown.

AP Images/Jim Mahoney
13mMike Reiss

Patriots president takes jab at fired Colts GM

Patriots president Jonathan Kraft expressed little sympathy for fired Colts GM Ryan Grigson, who alerted the NFL about New England's deflated footballs ahead of the 2015 AFC Championship Game.

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54mRob Demovsky

Crosby's playoff-record FG streak ends at 23

Packers kicker Mason Crosby missed a field goal attempt in the first quarter of Sunday's NFC Championship Game, ending his postseason-record streak of successful field goals at 23.

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Ryan shows off the wheels for rushing TD in win (0:19)
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Berman gets a surprise on NFL Countdown (2:12)
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Kelce writes a check for his fine on NFL Countdown (1:18)
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LeDay throws down monster dunk on defender (0:15)
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Miller scores the OT winner for Rangers (0:26)
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Crosby's goal is exclamation point in Pens' win (0:30)
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Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images
18hBrett Okamoto

Ortiz submits Sonnen in career finale

In the final bout of his 20-year career, former UFC champion Tito Ortiz made quick work of Chael Sonnen via first-round submission at Bellator 170 on Saturday.

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Daley knocks out Ward with flying knee (0:49)
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UNC ball boy drains three half-court shots (1:11)

Now

Matt Bowen ESPN Staff Writer 

Quick cut from DeAngelo Williams on the TD run. Bend the ball back and then find some daylight to get into the end zone. After the missed extra point, it's a 10-6 Patriots lead over the Steelers in the second quarter.

Jeremy Fowler ESPN Staff Writer 

Eli Rogers told me this week he thought it's taken a whole for Ben Roethlisberger to look his way consistently because of lack of true slot wide receiver the last few years. He's feeding him today with three catches for 33 yards.

Matt Bowen ESPN Staff Writer 

Tom Brady finds a wide open Chris Hogan in the end zone to push the Patriots lead to 10-0 over the Steelers. That was a post-wheel concept. And it sends two receivers through the zone (outside one-third). With the Patriots picking up the pressure, Brady had time to slide out of the pocket and target Hogan.

Mike Reiss ESPN Staff Writer 

Tom Brady's 16-yard touchdown pass to Chris Hogan with 2:47 remaining in the first quarter has given the Patriots a 10-0 lead, with running back James White's blitz pickup up the middle keeping the pocket clean for Brady, who was able to slide to his left and survey his options before finding a wide-open Hogan. It started with good pass protection.

Vaughn McClure ESPN Staff Writer 

MVP frontrunner Matt Ryan standing tall after leading his team to the Super Bowl.

Vaughn McClure ESPN Staff Writer 

The celebration is on for the NFC champs. Falcons going to the Super Bowl.

Rob Demovsky ESPN Staff Writer 

"If this shows us anything it's how important homefield advantage is," Aaron Rodgers said. "We've played in three of these now, all on the road."

Jones has a day to remember in blowout win
NFL 

Falcons WR Julio Jones turns the NFC title game against the Packers into his own personal highlight reel by scoring a pair of remarkable touchdowns and adding one of the best catches of the playoffs.

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NFL 

Matt Bowen ESPN Staff Writer 

If the Steelers sit back in zone-coverage, Tom Brady is going to target open throwing windows. Saw that on the opening drive with Julian Edelman on the crossing route. Five-yard throws turns into an explosive gain with Edelman's ability after the catch. Patriots kick a field goal and take an early 3-0 lead in the first quarter.

Mike Reiss ESPN Staff Writer 

From the Patriots record books: Stephen Gostkowski's 31-yard FG to give New England a 3-0 lead was his 27th career postseason field goal, breaking Adam Vinatieri's old franchise record.

Dave Tuley ESPN Staff Writer 

Steelers-Patriots is under way. The ViewFromVegas is New England closed as a 5.5-point home favorite (7 of 13 Vegas books on the Don Best screen) over Pittsburgh after being -6 most of the week. The over/under closed at 50.

Mike Reiss ESPN Staff Writer 

In a surprise, the Patriots won the opening toss and elected to take the ball. They are usually a team that defers the choice to the second half.

Dave Tuley ESPN Staff Writer 

More ViewFromVegas of Falcons' 44-21 over the Packers: Green Bay won the second half 21-20, but Atlanta covered as a 4-point second-half underdog. The second half went over the betting total of 30.5 points. The Falcons' win and cover improves favorites (all at home) to 7-2 ATS so far in the NFL playoffs and overs are now 6-3.

Dave Tuley ESPN Staff Writer 

Falcons rout Packers 44-21 to advance to Super Bowl LI. The ViewFromVegas is Atlanta covered as a 6-point home favorite and the game went over the betting total of 60.5 points, the highest-ever NFL playoff over/under.

Rob Demovsky ESPN Staff Writer 

Here's how bad it was for the Packers. They had to finish Sunday's NFC title game with defensive tackle Letroy Guion playing on the offensive line because of injuries. It was the final straw in the Packers' 44-21 loss to the Atlanta Falcons.

Matt Bowen ESPN Staff Writer 

Packers had matchup issues all day vs. Julio Jones. Inside crossing routes, the deep dig (square-in), the out route, back-shoulder fade, etc. Jones showed the ability to win at the line of scrimmage and separate to the ball. The WR finished with 180 yards and two touchdowns on nine receptions in the Falcons 44-21 win in the NFC Championship.

Kevin Seifert NFL Nation 

Too soon? The Packers will have the No. 29 overall pick in the 2017 draft, regardless of what happens tonight in the AFC Championship Game. Their 10-6 regular-season record was worse than either the Steelers (11-5) or Patriots (14-2).

Nick Wagoner ESPN Staff Writer 

With the Falcons' convincing NFC championship victory, the 49ers wait to hire a head coach will continue. Atlanta offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan can't be officially hired until his season is complete and that now won't happen until after the Super Bowl, which is two weeks away. The Niners will, however, meet with Shanahan for a second time this week. That meeting is expected to happen on Friday and will likely center on finding the right general manager to pair with Shanahan as well as possible coaching staff additions for the Niners to pursue in the meantime.

Vaughn McClure ESPN Staff Writer 

The Atlanta Falcons are headed to the Super Bowl after a convincing 44-21 win over the Green Bay Packers for the NFC Championship. They will take on the Patriots or the Steelers. They closed out the Georgia Dome in style.

Powell gets the block then the slam
NBA 

Dwight Powell helped punctuate a 122-73 Mavs win by coming up with a block then flushing home a dunk on the other end. The 49-point loss was the worst in Lakers history.

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NBA 

Tim MacMahon ESPN Staff Writer 

Wesley Matthews, who sat out the second half due to a right hip strain, expects to play Wednesday against the Knicks.

Tom VanHaaren ESPN Staff Writer 

ESPN 300 offensive lineman C.J. Thorpe had been planning to take an official visit to Michigan on November 27, despite his commitment to Penn State. The Nittany Lions legacy took his official visit to Happy Valley this past weekend, though, and has now reaffirmed his commitment to Penn State after the trip. Thorpe confirmed that he will no longer be visiting Michigan and is done taking visits.

Matt Bowen ESPN Staff Writer 

Packers used a man-coverage beater on Aaron Rodgers' TD pass to Jared Cook. That's called a double smash-7 (corner). Really tough on the DB to win there with an inside alignment. Lot of room to cover with Cook on the corner route. And the DB doesn't have leverage to the ball. Packers cut the Falcons lead to 44-21 in the fourth quarter.

Mike Reiss ESPN Staff Writer 

During his pre-game interview on 98.5 The Sports Hub, Patriots president Jonathan Kraft initially deflected a question on the Colts' firing of general manager Ryan Grigson, who started Deflategate. There is no love lost there, with Kraft referring to the AFC title game against the Colts which started Deflategate and saying, "That game might have been Ryan's pinnacle, I don't know."

Jeremy Fowler ESPN Staff Writer 

If Steelers win, Ryan Shazier will likely be a big factor.