No. 3: 2002 NFC Wild Card Game vs. New York Giants
Speaking of wild comebacks, the 2002 NFC Wild Card game against the New York Giants at Candlestick Park was about as epic as it gets.
The Giants have a long history of haunting San Francisco’s postseason dreams, and it looked as if that would be the case again this season. New York was already up 28-14 by halftime and extended its lead to 35-14 early in the third quarter.
When the G-Men tacked on a field goal to make it 38-14 with just over four minutes remaining in the third quarter, it was all over.
Or was it?
A 26-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Jeff Garcia to wide receiver Terrell Owens late in the third quarter gave the 49ers some life and a chance. Following a Giants punt their next possession, Garcia responded again with a 14-yard rushing touchdown to make it 38-30.
A one-score game followed by another New York 3-and-out.
The Niners tacked on a field goal to close the gap even further, then the Giants subsequently botched a field-goal try of their own to keep it 38-33.
Finally, Garcia engineered a drive culminating in a 13-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Tai Streets to give the 49ers the most insane of insane comeback leads.
And it held. San Francisco advanced in epic fashion.