Trip to Seattle on the Line

The path to the Super Bowl is clear, beat the Panthers at Soldier Field and the Bears will travel to Seattle to face the Seahawks in the NFC Title game.

Despite playing the majority of the game without the offensive player of the year, the Seahawks beat the Redskins 20-10 for their first postseason victory since 1984.

RB Shaun Alexander suffered a concussion on just his sixth carry of the game and didn't return. QB Matt Hasselbeck threw for a touchdown and ran for another against the vaunted Washington defense.

Although the Redskins were down 17-3 at one point, they had the ball with a chance to tie the game in the fourth quarter. When the drive stalled, K John Hall pulled a 36-yard field goal. On the ensuing drive Seattle tacked on a field goal to put the game away.

First things first, the Bears have to beat the Panthers for the second time this season in order to advance to the NFC Title game. The franchise hasn't tasted success in the postseason since beating the Vikings in the wildcard round of the 1994 playoffs.

Carolina Panthers (12-5) at Chicago Bears (11-5)
Sunday, 3:30 CT
TV: FOX, Joe Buck, Troy Aikman, Pam Oliver

4th meeting. Bears lead series 2-1. The Bears dominated the Panthers at Soldier Field on Nov. 20 as ex-Panther Muhsin Muhammad scored the game's only touchdown pass in a 13-3 win over the Panthers. The Bears sacked Jake Delhomme eight times and intercepted him twice.

Panthers: offense 22nd (19th rush, 17th pass); defense 3rd (4th rush, 9th pass). Bears: offense 29th (8th rush, 31st pass); defense 2nd (11th rush, 5th pass).


  • CB Jerry Azumah, who has been nagged by a chronic hip injury, missed practice on Friday and is now listed as probable on the injury report. He will play his usual nickel corner spot but is expected to be replaced by Rashied Davis on kickoff returns.

  • After practicing Thursday and Friday, RB DeShaun Foster (toe) was upgraded to probable for Sunday's game. He will start against the Bears.

    Panthers: QB Jake Delhomme has a 105.1 passer rating in five career playoff games. ... RB DeShaun Foster has averaged 5.0 yards per carry in five career playoff games. Bears: Defensive linemen accounted for eight sacks in the regular season meeting. ... Seek first trip to the NFC Championship game since 1988. ... WR Muhsin Muhammad is the Panthers' all-time leader with 578 receptions and 7,751 receiving yards.

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