Giants claim NFC East title

New York Giants' Ahmad Bradshaw escapes a tackle by Dallas' Sean Lee to score on a 10-yard touchdown pass in the first half of the Giants' win over the Cowboys.

Eli Manning threw three touchdown passes and the New York Giants won an all-or-nothing game to claim the final spot in the NFL playoffs, beating the Dallas Cowboys 31-14 on Sunday night.

 

The regular season went down to the last game, and it was coach Tom Coughlin’s Giants (9-7) who won the NFC East and returned to the postseason for the first time since 2008.

The loss left the Cowboys (8-8) out of the playoffs for the second consecutive year.

New York earned a wild-card home game next Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons (10-6).

Even without any Tim Tebow heroics, the Denver Broncos won the AFC West.

They did it despite falling 7-3 to the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday because San Diego knocked off Oakland 38-26. The Broncos and Raiders tied for the division lead at 8-8, but Denver won on the tiebreaker, better results in common games.

Baltimore (12-4) took the AFC North and a first-round bye as a No. 2 seed when it outlasted Cincinnati 24-16. Even though the Bengals lost, their 9-7 record earned them a wild card in a head-to-head tiebreaker over Tennessee.

Pittsburgh (12-4) is the other wild-card. The Steelers, who beat Cleveland 13-9, will be at Denver next weekend. Cincinnati visits Houston (10-6).

The Patriots (13-3) earned the right to stay at home throughout the AFC playoffs after a 49-21 victory over Buffalo, which led 21-0.

San Francisco (13-3), under first-year coach Jim Harbaugh, the 49ers will be the No. 2 seed in the NFC behind Green Bay (15-1) after a 34-27 win at St. Louis.

New Orleans (13-3) is seeded third after a 45-17 win over Carolina.

The Saints will play host to Detroit (10-6), which lost at Green Bay 45-41.

WILD-CARD PLAYOFFS

Saturday

• Cincinnati (9-7) at Houston (10-6), 4:30 p.m.

• Detroit (10-6) at New Orleans (13-3), 8

Sunday

• Atlanta (10-6) at New York (9-7), 1 p.m.

• Pittsburgh (12-4) at Denver (8-8), 4:30

 

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