ATLANTA - Julio Jones played about as flawless a quarter of football as you can possibly play to start off the NFC championship game. The Falcons' receiver caught five passes for 100 yards and a touchdown (and another on the first play of the second quarter). The game would balance out, of course.
Jones' one miss that quarter was on a dive out of bounds; on that play, though, he smacked straight into an oblivious Georgia Dome guard. It was a scary moment, as the guard lay motionless on the ground for several minutes. But while the broadcast was away at commercial, the guard got to his feet and walked under his own power.
Football sidelines are crowded places; there aren't many places for players to run without taking out someone. New Orleans coach Sean Payton got hit in 2011 and suffered torn knee ligaments, and both Joe Paterno and Charlie Weis suffered serious injury when hit on the sideline. “With the media now, there’s people on both sides of the 30, and there’s no room for anybody to go,” ESPN analyst Herm Edwards told the New York Times in 2011. “If you’re not paying attention and you don’t know where that ball is at, you’re done.”
Well, if nothing else, at least someone on the San Francisco sideline was capable of slowing down Jones.
-Follow Jay Busbee on Twitter at @jaybusbee.-
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