Tigers in the NFL: NFC, AFC Championships Preview

Trips to Super Bowl LVII are on the line today in the AFC and NFC Championship Games, and there are several former Clemson Tigers competing for a chance to extend their seasons and win a ring. 

Here’s a look at which players with Clemson ties will be participating in each game:

NFC Championship: San Francisco 49ers at Philadelphia Eagles (3 p.m., FOX)

San Francisco return specialist Ray-Ray McCloud and Eagles safety K’von Wallace are chasing their first Super Bowl appearances. McCloud had a wild game last week against the Dallas Cowboys as he fumbled on a punt return but answered the miscure with a 53-yard kick return that helped the 49ers win 19-12.

Meanwhile, Wallace is coming off a solid game against the New York Giants in last week’s divisional round as he recorded three tackles, one pass defended and one QB hit. He’ll have his hands full today against a dynamic group of pass-catchers that includes former South Carolina standout Deebo Samuel, receiver Brandon Aiyuk and tight end George Kittle. 

Wallace is looking to get the Eagles back in the Super Bowl for the first time since the franchise won it all in 2018 while the 49ers last played in the final game in 2019, but they haven’t won the NFL’s championship since the 1994 season. 

The Eagles are a 3-point favorite over the 49ers today, according to Betonline.

AFC Championship: Cincinnati Bengals at Kansas City Chiefs (6:30 p.m., CBS)

The Bengals are getting big impacts from former Tigers in their second consecutive playoff run to the conference title game against the Chiefs. Cincinnati won this very game a year ago to reach the Super Bowl. Higgins had a big game in that 2022 showdown, catching six passes for a game-high 103 receiving yards in the Begals’ 27-24 victory. This year, it could be one of any of the three former Clemson talents or a combination who leads the Bengals to their fourth consecutive win over the Chiefs. 

Higgins had just three catches for 28 yards against the Bills last week, but he’s now produced 25 rece[tions, 374 yards and two touchdowns in six career playoff games.  Jackson Carman made a huge difference for the Bengals last week as he slid out to left tackle because of injuries to starters, and the former Clemson OL had a great game clearing the way for Joe Mixon and the run game while also protecting Joe Burrow. He’ll get another start today. 

On the other side of the ball, Bengals DT D.J. Reader is considered one of the top run stoppers in the NFL, and he’ll need to have a big game on early downs to force Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes, who’s dealing with a high ankle sprain, to throw from the pocket. The Chiefs don’t have an active player on the roster from Clemson, but former receiver Justyn Ross is on the injured reserve. 

The Bengals are a 2-point underdog at Kansas City today.

Want to join in on the discussion? 100% FREE! Interact with fellow Tiger fans and hear directly from publisher Zach Lentz, deputy editor Brad Senkiw, recruiting analyst Jason Priester and staff writer Will Vandervort on any subject. Click here to become a member of the ALL CLEMSON message board community today!
Do us a HUGE favor and like, subscribe and follow us on social media:
►LIKE us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/allclemson
►SUBSCRIBE: https://www.youtube.com/c/AllClemson
►FOLLOW All Clemson on Twitter:https://twitter.com/All_Clemson

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
%d bloggers like this: