49ers defense looks to stop Brees, red-hot Saints - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

49ers defense looks to stop Brees, red-hot Saints

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By JANIE McCAULEY
AP Sports Writer

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Drew Brees piled up points, yards and accolades in a record-setting season for the New Orleans Saints. Much of the time, Alex Smith did just enough to get the San Francisco 49ers back in the playoffs for the first time in nine years while a dominant defense and kicking game did the rest.

Everybody is curious to see which of the drastically contrasting styles works best in a classic playoff matchup of teams with storied postseason histories.

Brees and the Saints (14-3) come to sold-out Candlestick Park on Saturday afternoon riding a 9-game winning streak after gaining 600 yards in each of their last two games.

San Francisco (13-3) also relied on David Akers' single-season NFL record of 44 field goals to make it back to the postseason.

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