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Inbox: That game hung on the edge so many times

It was every guy taking his turn

Packers DL Kenny Clark pressures Seahawks QB Russell Wilson
Packers DL Kenny Clark pressures Seahawks QB Russell Wilson

Glenn from Hardscrabble, IN

Two men enter, one man leaves. Finishing is everything.

Playoff football in nine words.

Chris from Frederick, MD

It had to be a close game, didn't it? I love this team, just another memory to cherish.

Even at 28-10 midway through the third quarter, at no point did I ever think the game wasn't coming down to the wire. It's been the story of the season.

Dan from Herriman, UT

Mike, I know you guys are watching the game through a different lens than all of us in the Inbox, but didn't a little bit of you say "here we go" when Wilson got the ball back the last time?

For sure, but it was with the mindset wondering who's going to make the play, these guys or those guys? Both teams have been winning games like that all season long. But they couldn't both come through this time.

Margeaux from Tallahassee, FL

Which play will go on the locker room hallway wall: the Rodgers-to-Adams third-down conversion, or the Rodgers-to-Graham conversion that followed and iced the game?

Inbox HOF-worthy question, and if you don't know why I'm saying that, you don't read enough on the site aside from the Inbox. I think an artist or designer needs to come up with a collage that highlights in somewhat equal measures Preston's sack and the pair of third-down throws. That was three crunch-time moments in a span of less than 90 seconds of game clock.

Sam from Melbourne, IA

Aaron can still make any and all the throws, I'd like that narrative in the national media to stop. I mean holy smokes some of those passes.

No kidding. That was a treat to watch, and fun to write about, too, in my postgame editorial. I have to believe I said "what a throw" to Wes in the press box at least five or six times.

Andy from Ellsworth, WI

Just a comment...Now we're the worst 14-3 team in the history of the league!

And no one cares. Or should care.

Matt from Waunakee, WI

Hi Mike, were you surprised Seattle punted?

Not after losing the six yards on the sack to make it fourth-and-11. With all three timeouts plus the two-minute, seemed like a pretty obvious call. They got the Packers into two third-and-longs. That game hung on the edge so many times.

Steve from Granite Bay, CA

Can someone explain to me how Sullivan getting his hands on the fumble and clearly laying on the ground with it in his hands at the end of the play equates to "no clear recovery"? That was the most inane call I have ever witnessed from a regular NFL officiating crew.

Worthwhile qualification at the end of your statement, but yeah, I don't know what they were looking for. I said a few times in the in-game live blog it felt like the officiating was "shaky" all night. There just seemed to be no command of what was really going on out there.

Simon from Copenhagen, Denmark

First time I ever saw that outcome on a challenge. "You got it right. But we are still taking away the timeout."

It can happen on a spot challenge, too, if they move the ball but don't change whether or not it was a first down.

Jessi from Sterling, KS

Preston: "Like chasing a chicken in a field with no fence." That's what it looked like too! Makes it all the more potent that they contained Lynch in the run game. Who was the defensive star for you in this game?

It was every guy taking his turn. Martinez staying square in the open field on a third-down Wilson scramble and stopping him short. King flying up to make a tackle. Alexander on the two-point-play blitz. The Smiths and Clark staying after it, play after play. Wilson is absolutely amazing. I don't know how else to say it. There's nothing ordinary about his game. It's exhausting watching him. I can't imagine how the players feel trying to tackle him.

Nick from Spencer, IA

Spoff, was that you I saw walking past Davante as he was being interviewed by ESPN in the facility after the game?

Apparently. An endless number of Inbox readers have made me aware. I guess Wes caught some camera time, too. Totally by accident on my part. Was just headed to the elevator to get upstairs to my desk after the press conferences so I could start writing.

Izzy from Raleigh, NC

It only took 15 years, but at least now I can say I once saw Aaron Rodgers run a quarterback sneak.

He ran plenty of sneaks early in his career, but the frequency tapered off and I can't for the life of me remember when his last one was before Sunday night.

Nicholas from Superior, WI

SBNation has the best article on the spot given to Graham. They have a shot that shows FOX's unofficial yellow line about 4-6 inches too far from the marker. On to the 49ers!

Thanks for the referral. The yellow line was clearly not accurate. It becomes easier to see why the call stood.

Matt from Twin Falls, ID

I've never heard a referee mention additional footage coming in late before. Is this a common occurrence that just isn't regularly announced?

It's the first I've heard of it. Sounds like FOX wasn't entirely on top of its game, either.

Brian from Colorado Springs, CO

What a game! I know most everyone will be talking about the big plays on third downs to Adams and Graham and the sack by Preston Smith. But do you think the corner blitz and sack by Alexander on Seattle's two-point conversion was just as big? That stopped a lot of the momentum Seattle seemed to have, kept it at a five-point game and eliminated Seattle from potentially being able to kick a game-tying field goal.

It was a big play, no doubt, but it becomes an even bigger play if Graham had been ruled short at the end, because it's a lot easier to go for it on fourth down from that field position if you're up more than three points.

Freddie from West Valley City, UT

Were you more surprised by the Saints' or Ravens' early exit?

Definitely Baltimore's. The Ravens were the best team in the NFL this year in the regular season, and there was really no argument. Huge props to the Titans. They've taken the small opening that was available to get in – a Week 17 win – and blasted it wide open.

Lambeau Field hosted an NFC Divisional playoff game between the Green Bay Packers and Seattle Seahawks.