San Francisco 49ers: Top 20 games in franchise history

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2011 NFC Championship Game

On January 23, 2012 the New York Giants came to San Francisco for the NFC Championship game. The team was searching for a Super Bowl berth in the first year of former head coach Jim Harbaugh’s tenure.

Former 49ers wide receiver Kyle Williams fumbled twice in the game. In regulation, a punt was ruled to have touched Williams’ leg despite his protest. The teams went into overtime tied at 17, and Williams’ would have an opportunity to redeem himself on a punt return. The Giants’ Jacquian Williams stripped the 49ers receiver during his return and the ball was recovered by New York.

The 49ers offense never saw the field and the New York Giants’ Lawrence Tynes kicked a game-winning field goal to head to the Super Bowl. Fans watching the game were devastated by a loss to end a season that seemed magical.

Although the 49ers lost, the game was the beginning of an impressive run with Harbaugh as coach. Despite a lockout-shortened offseason, the 49ers were successful under the first-year coach with an overall record of 14-4. The Harbaugh years had officially begun.

Next: A Major Comeback