SAN FRANCISCO — Eli Manning is headed to another Super Bowl with a shot to show the world he belongs in the same breath as Tom Brady.
Manning directed one short, final drive and Lawrence Tynes kicked a game-winning 31-yard field goal in sudden death overtime, sending the New York Giants to the Super Bowl with a 20-17 victory over the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC championship game Sunday night.
In another tight one in this decades-old postseason rivalry, both defenses made key stops before New York capitalized on another costly mistake by San Francisco.
Manning and the Giants (12-7) will face the New England Patriots in the Super Bowl on Feb. 5 in Indianapolis. The last time the teams met for the NFL title, 2008, the Giants ended the Patriots’ bid for a perfect season.
Tynes got the Giants there for a second time. He kicked the game-winning field goal in overtime at Green Bay in the 2008 NFC title game that put New York in the Super Bowl on the way to the franchise’s third title.
Devin Thomas put the Giants in position. He recovered his second fumble of the game after Jacquian Williams stripped the ball from fill-in return man Kyle Williams, who also fumbled earlier to set up a New York touchdown.
“It’s my second NFC championship game, my second game-winner,” Tynes said. “It’s amazing. I had dreams about this last night. It was from 42, not 31, but I was so nervous today before the game just anticipating this kind of game. I’m usually pretty cool, but there was something about tonight where I knew I was going to have to make a kick. Hats off to Eli, offense, defense. Great win.”
Manning went 32 of 58 for 316 yards and two touchdowns in his fifth road playoff win.