“It made it tough on them,” Rogers said. “Things like that happen. No excuses. We made the plays and were able to get off the field.”
Such was the case throughout the regular season as the Niners ranked among the top four in scoring average, third-down efficiency, yards rushing and yards passing.
They just needed to reclaim their identity and prove they had moved past the disappointment of last year’s NFC title game loss to the New York Giants.
“I don’t really think it’s destiny or anything like that written on the walls,” Smith said. “It’s the team that works the hardest, prepares the hardest and has the best players and coaching staff. You pour all that in together and it comes out pretty good at the end.”
Online: http://pro32.ap.org/poll and http://twitter.com/AP—NFL