Super Bowl champions Seattle moved a step closer to a return to the NFL’s title game with a 31-17 playoff win over the Carolina Panthers. Quarterback Russell Wilson threw three touchdown passes and defender Kam Chancellor returned an interception 90 yards for a touchdown in the fourth quarter as the Seahawks pulled away.
With the victory, the Seahawks advance to the National Football Conference title game. They will host the winner of Sunday’s NFC second-round clash between the Dallas Cowboys and the Green Bay Packers. Wilson completed 15 of 22 passing attempts for 268 yards and added 22 yards on the ground.
Jermaine Kearse caught three passes for 129 yards and a touchdown and Luke Willson had four receptions for 68 yards and a TD for the Seahawks, who have won eight straight post-season games in front of their frenzied fans in Seattle. Seattle’s Marshawn Lynch carried the ball 14 times for 59 yards. Panthers quarterback Cam Newton completed 23 of 36 passes for 246 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions.