TWO TEAMS, TWO RINGS?
Denver's Peyton Manning will try to become the first starting quarterback to win a Super Bowl with two different teams when the Broncos play at the Meadowlands on Feb. 2 against the Seattle Seahawks. Manning led Indianapolis to a Super Bowl victory against Chicago in the 2007 game.
SO, WE MEET AGAIN
Peyton Manning improved to 5-10 in his career against Tom Brady, but is now 2-1 in AFC title game matchups after Denver topped New England 26-16 on Sunday.
San Francisco's Colin Kaepernick ran for 130 yards in the 49ers' 23-17 loss to Seattle on Sunday, rushing for the second-most yards by a quarterback in a playoff game. No. 1 is also Kaepernick, who had 181 yards rushing last year against Green Bay in the NFC divisional round. He also had 98 in the wild-card round against Green Bay two weeks ago, giving him three of the top seven performances by QBs in playoff history.
San Francisco All-Pro linebacker NaVorro Bowman suffered what is believed to be a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee, which could require reconstructive surgery this offseason. "Preliminary it looks like an ACL," coach Jim Harbaugh said following a 23-17 loss to the Seahawks in the NFC championship game. "Tough break for NaVorro." The 49ers also lost starting left guard Mike Iupati to what the 49ers believe is a fractured ankle. ... New England cornerback Aqib Talib left the Patriots' 26-16 loss to Denver with a knee injury in the second quarter of Sunday's AFC championship game. The Patriots first announced Talib left with a rib ailment, but changed it to a knee after halftime.
"I'm the best corner in the game. When you try me with a sorry receiver like Crabtree, that's the result you gonna get. Don't you ever talk about me!" — Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman's postgame rant about San Francisco wide receiver Michael Crabtree to Fox reporter Erin Andrews after the Seahawks' 23-17 win.
"Just standing here feels pretty good because I almost wasn't." — Denver coach John Fox, who missed several weeks of the season after needing heart surgery but returned to lead the Broncos to the Super Bowl.
AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org