2. 49ers 30, Packers 27 (NFC: 1998)
Green Bay and San Francisco were meeting in the postseason for the fourth straight year. The Packers had gotten the best of the 49ers in both the 1995 and 1996 NFC Divisional Playoffs as well as the 1997 NFC title game. The ’96 postseason clash took place at Lambeau Field and the other two contests were in San Francisco.
Mike Holmgren’s team had dethroned the then-Super Bowl champion Niners in ’95 and went on to hoist a Lombardi Trophy a year later. Hence, the Packers were looking to reach the Super Bowl for the third consecutive season. The Packers followed their Super Bowl XXXI title with a loss to the wild card Denver Broncos a year later (XXXII).
Hence, Green Bay was a wild card team in the NFC Central behind the 15-1 Minnesota Vikings. Likewise the 49ers, who finished behind the 14-2 Atlanta Falcons in the NFC West.
For much of the afternoon, 49ers’ wide receiver Terrell Owens struggled. But the future Hall of Famer would save his best for when it counted most. With the Packers down 23-20 in the fourth quarter. Brett Favre led a march that concluded with a 15-yard TD pass to WR Antonio Freeman with only 1:56 to play, giving Green Bay a 27-23 advantage.
Steve Young retaliated with a 76-yard march and found Owens in a crowd down the middle with a 25-yard strike in the end zone with just three seconds to play.