Patriots vs. Broncos, AFC Championship Game: First Super Bowl XLVIII participant to be decided

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

We take a quick look at Sunday's AFC Championship Game, and open a thread for discussion. New to Niners Nation? Sign up here and join the discussion!

Championship Sunday officially gets underway at noon PT as the Denver Broncos host the New England Patriots. These are the top two seeds in the AFC, and both were among the betting favorites to get to the Super Bowl at the start of the season. Of course, the same can be said about the 49ers-Seahawks matchup later this afternoon, so the NFL has to be pretty pleased about how the final four played out.

While 49ers-Seahawks features two of the most prominent young quarterbacks in the league, Broncos-Patriots features the two elder statesmen of the league. Tom Brady and Peyton Manning have faced off numerous times, and naturally that has created the legacy storyline we see today. Brady has a chance to go to his record sixth Super Bowl, while Manning has a chance to shed some media-created postseason demons. His Colts beat the Patriots en route to the Super Bowl, but naturally people still question Peyton Manning's postseason bona fides. I'm not surprised by it, and a win would hopefully quiet some of that down.

We'll be back with 49ers-Seahawks inactives 90 minutes before the game. That will be followed by the first game thread at 3:15 p.m. PT.

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