49ers in their stride as Cowboys look to Prescott to inspire underdog victory

The San Francisco 49ers Divisional Round clash against the Dallas Cowboys is a game where the number 11 tells a different story for both sides.

For the 49ers, their run of 11 straight wins, each of which has come without multiple turnovers, puts them in good stead to advance to the penultimate round of the playoffs under the stewardship of rookie quarterback Brock Purdy.

No side in NFL history has ever recorded 11 consecutive wins in a single season without conceding multiple turnovers in any of those games, with the last such occasion for the 49ers being a trio of turnovers against Kansas City in Week 7 – the second game in a row that saw three turnovers for San Francisco.

The 49ers' winning run has come with Purdy, the last pick of the 2022 NFL Draft, excelling in a remarkable run that could result in accolades should San Francisco go all the way.

Purdy has become one of 12 QBs in NFL history to enjoy a six-start undefeated stint with 120.0 or better passer rating and had his team score over 200 points, with all the previous 11 either winning the Super Bowl or an MVP award in their careers.

Despite throwing three touchdown passes and accumulating 332 passing yards against the Seattle Seahawks in the Wild Card round, Purdy was not at his best, finishing the game with 60 per cent passing accuracy, completing 18 of 30 attempts.

Purdy
Purdy

While Purdy boasted the third-most passing yards of the Wild Card round, behind only Josh Allen (352) and Tom Brady (351), only Tyler Huntley threw fewer completions (17) in last week's contests.

Averaging 11.07 yards per completion, incomplete passes did not hinder the 49ers against Seattle but better efficiency against the Cowboys may be required.

In contrast to the 49ers' fine winning streak this season, Dallas are looking to bring an end to a disappointing franchise record, having failed to reach the Championship Game in their last 11 playoff appearances.

Dallas' last Championship Game appearance came 27 years ago, on their way to victory at Super Bowl XXX, with their streak being the longest across the NFL in that regard.

Victory against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last week was only their fifth playoff win since Super Bowl XXX, and the Cowboys' hopes rest on Dak Prescott.

Prescott enters the game on the back of a stellar performance against the Buccaneers, where he became the first QB in NFL history to complete 75 per cent of his passes (when counting players with at least 30 attempts), throw four TD passes without an interception and rush for 20 yards and a TD in a single game.

A similar performance will likely be required to cause an upset against the in-form 49ers, though last season's defeat in the Wild Card game at home to San Francisco may serve as encouragement.