UPDATE: After defeating the Kansas City Chiefs in an overtime thriller, the New England Patriots will meet the Los Angeles Rams in the Super Bowl on Feb. 3.
NEW ORLEANS — The Los Angeles Rams are headed for the Super Bowl after defeating the New Orleans Saints 26-23 in overtime Sunday.
The NFC Championship win came on a 57-yard field goal by Rams kicker Greg Zuerlein on the second possession of overtime.
Noise was a factor all day as the teams squared off in front of a raucous Mercedes-Benz Superdome. After a dismal offensive first quarter, the Rams began moving the ball with more consistency as the game wore on.
The score was tied 23-23 as regulation expired, and New Orleans won the coin toss, choosing to receive the ball first. On that drive, Rams safety John Johnson III made a crucial interception, setting up Zuerlein for the long field goal.
A pivotal moment before overtime came in the form of a controversial no-call late in the fourth quarter. Officials did not throw a flag on Rams cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman when he hit Saints receiver Tommylee Lewis as he tried to haul in a pass near the end zone. Replays appeared to clearly show pass interference.
With no penalty on the play, the Saints settled for a field goal, going up 23-20 with less than two minutes remaining in the fourth quarter. The Rams marched down the field on their next possession, kicking a field goal to send the game to overtime.
Next up: A week off for the Pro Bowl, then Super Bowl LIII between the New England Patriots and Los Angeles Rams.