Seahawks Beat 49ers, Are Super Bowl-Bound
They'll face Denver in Super Bowl XLVIII after a 23-17 win
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jan 20, 2014 2:19 AM CST
Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll, left, celebrates with Russell Wilson , right,after the NFL football NFC Championship game against the San Francisco 49ers Sunday, Jan. 19, 2014, in Seattle. The...   (Matt Slocum)
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(Newser) – "Every ounce of your energy, every moment spent watching film has been worth it, because we made it." Indeed. So said Seattle Seahawks All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman, whose game-saving deflection in the end zone with 22 seconds left was caught by teammate Malcolm Smith to clinch the 23-17 win over division rival San Francisco last night. "It's fantastic." A fantastic match-up, too. Seattle will meet Denver (15-3) for the NFL title in two weeks in the New Jersey Meadowlands. It's the first trip to the big game for the Seahawks (15-3) since they lost to Pittsburgh after the 2005 season.

The conference champs had the best records in the league this year, the second time the top seeds have gotten to the Super Bowl in 20 seasons. It also is a classic confrontation of Denver's record-setting offense led by Peyton Manning against the NFL's stingiest defense. Denver opened as a 1-point favorite over Seattle on the Glantz-Culver Line. "We wouldn't have it any other way," said Sherman. "They're an unbelievable, record-setting offense with a Hall of Fame quarterback. That's as tough a game as you can get in the Super Bowl. The No. 1 defense against the No. 1 offense. It doesn't happen like this too often." Click for last night's play-by-play, or read about Seattle's raucous fans ... who have caused earthquakes.