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With the Conference Championships Weekend upon us Live Toast takes a walk down memory lane to look back at the most expensive NFL playoff tickets of the past five years. Five of this year's games appear on the list, with the rematch of the AFC Championship between the New England Patriots and Baltimore Ravens number four on the list. Keep in mind these are just playoff games, not the Super Bowl. The average price is the average price fans paid for a ticket to that game on Ticket Liquidator's exchange, so keep in mind tickets were sold for both higher and lower prices.

  • #1
  • Matchup: Chicago Bears vs. Green Bay Packers - 2011 NFC Championship
  • Average ticket price: $543
  • Location: Soldier Field, Chicago
  • Final score: Packers 21, Bears 14
  • Attendance: 62,377

Given the animosity and proximity between these two teams it's not surprising to find that the Packers vs Bears 2011 NFC Championship fetched the highest price of any post-season NFL game. The Packer's win propelled Green Bay into to Super Bowl XLV against the Steelers, where they went on to win their first Super Bowl title since 1996. Fans expected a tough game going in, as the Bears were 11-5 with a 5-3 record at Soldier Field that season. The Packers meanwhile had secured their playoff spot with a win over the Bears at Lambeau in the final week of the regular season. The hopes of Green Bay fans and ownership rested on Aaron Rodgers, the young QB who forced out legend Brett Favre. While Rodgers was solid on offense, it was his defense that saved the game as he tackled Brian Urlacher after an interception to save a touchdown.

Jay Cutler's knee injury caused him to leave the game early in the third quarter, after he was getting booed at home. Chicago's third string quarterback Caleb Hanie led the Bears to a touchdown early in the fourth quarter to bring the Bears within a touchdown, however a pic six to the Packer's B.J. Raji put the Packers up 21-7. After Hanie connected with Earl Bennett the Bears were again behind by just a touchdown with under three minutes left. A fourth-down interception by the Packers's Sam Shields on the 29th yard sealed the win for Green Bay. The game was the first NFC Championship Game since 1978 without a field goal.

  • #2
  • Matchup: New Orleans Saints vs. Minnesota Vikings - 2010 NFC Championship
  • Average ticket price: $471
  • Location: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans
  • Final score: Vikings 28, Saints 31
  • Attendance: 71,276

The game that would launch the Saints's still-ongoing Spygate scandal, the Saints thrilling 31-28 OT win over the Vikings allowed the Saints to go on to win the franchise's only Super Bowl title. A 40-yard field goal by New Orleans's Garrett Hartley in overtime was the deciding factor in this game, after the 40-year-old Favre threw an interception near the end of regulation, sending the game into overtime. The Saints won the coin toss, Brees completed a fourth-and-1 to Pierre Thomas setting up the Hartley's kick 4:45 into OT. 2012 marked the last playoff game played with the sudden death rules, as the kick fueled the arguments that the previous sudden-death rules resulted in unfair ending of games.

The game marks the largest attendance ever for a Saints game, and with the city still reeling from Katrina the win was an incredible moment for Who Dat Nation. The Saints would go on to beat Peyton Manning and the Colts 31-17 in Super Bowl XLIV.

Favre finished 28 of 46 for 310 yards. Brees went 17 of 31 for 197 yards and three TDs. The game marked the fifth straight NFC title game loss for the Vikes franchise. Minnesota had five turnovers, including three fumbles, while Adrian Peterson scored three touchdowns.

  • #3
  • Matchup: San Francisco 49ers vs. New York Giants - 2012 NFC Championship
  • Average ticket price: $446
  • Location: Candlestick Park, San Francisco
  • Final score: Giants 20, 49ers 17
  • Attendance: 69,732

It took three overtimes before the Giant's Lawrence Tynes kicked a game-winning field goal from 31 yards after the 49ers's Kyle Williams fumbled a punt. It was the second fumble of the day for Williams.

The San Francisco defense had six sacks, Eli Manning had two touchdowns with Victor Cruz catching 7 passes for 110 yards. The Giants were coming off their victory over Aaron Rodgers and the defending champs. New York would go and win their second Super Bowl title over the Patriots.

  • #4
  • Matchup: New England Patriots vs. Baltimore Ravens - 2013 AFC Championship
  • Average ticket price: $418
  • Location: Gillette Stadium, Foxborough
  • Final score: TBA Buy tickets

A rematch of last year's AFC Championship, the Patriots vs. Ravens is currently the fourth most expensive post-season ticket of the past five years. The game goes down at Gillette and both teams have a lot to play for. In case you hadn't heard this is Ray Lewis's last season, giving the Ravens a little emotional fuel to bring down their AFC rival. The Ravens are coming of beating the #1-seeded Broncos and Peyton Manning, and beat the Pats 31-30 earlier this season in Baltimore. The Pats have averaged 30 points a game this season. They are 7-1 in AFC Title Games and 4-0 at home, and a win would further build on Brady and Belichick's QB-coach combination to win five conference championships in the Super Bowl era. Last year's game is mentioned below and is the seventh highest-average ticket price for an NFL playoff game. The final score was 23-20.

  • #5
  • Matchup: Pittsburgh Steelers vs. New York Jets - 2011 AFC Championship
  • Average ticket price: $319
  • Location: Heinz Field, Pittsburgh
  • Final score: Jets 19, Steelers 24
  • Attendance: 66,662

The 2011 AFC Championship, which marked the Steelers's third AFC Championship in six years, sent the Steelers to Super Bowl XLV, where they would loose to Green Bay. This was the season Big Ben served a four game suspension for violating the NFL's personal conduct policy due to a college students allegations he sexually assaulted her.

While the Jets had beaten Peyton Manning's Colts and then Tom Brady's Patriots, it didn't do much good against the Steelers. Pittsburgh was in control from the get go after a 66-yard, 15-play march that ended in a touchdown and took up the game's first nine minutes. Steeler James Harrison returned a fumble for a touchdown. Ike Taylor forced a fumble after sacking the Jets Mark Sanchez which, was recovered by William Gay and ran back to put the Steelers up 24-0. The first half ended with the Steelers enjoying a 24-3 lead. The Jets got within five with the score at 24-19 with 3:06 left on the clock after Mark Sanchez threw a 4-yard pass to Jerricho Cotchery. But the Steeler were able to hold off New York en route to another Super Bowl appearance.

  • #6
  • Matchup: New Orleans Saints vs. Arizona Cardinals - 2010 NFC Divisional Playoffs
  • Average ticket price: $288
  • Location: Superdome, New Orleans
  • Final score: Cardinals 14, Saints 45
  • Attendance: 70,149

Arizona, the defending NFC champions, had 38-year-old Kurt Warner facing off against the Saints's Drew Brees. Arizona was able to quiet the Superdome crowd on the first play of the game, with Tim Hightower breaking through the defense for a 70-yard touchdown run. But the Saints matched the Cardinals on the ensuing possession with a 10-play, 72-yard touchdown drive. Brees ended the game with three touchdown passes and Reggie Bush returned an 83-yard punt. This game is the second game from the Saint's magical Super Bowl run to be featured in the top ten most expensive NFL playoff tickets of the past five years.

  • #7
  • Matchup: New England Patriots vs. Baltimore Ravens - 2012 AFC Championship
  • Average ticket price: $287
  • Location: Gillette Stadium, Foxborough
  • Final score: Ravens 20, Patriots 23
  • Attendance: 71,547

This game will be repeated this weekend, when the Ravens will get a chance to redeem themselves after blowing a very winnable game. The Ravens's Billy Cundiff missed a 32-yard field goal with 11 seconds left to give the Pats the victory and a pass to the Super Bowl, where they again lost to the New York Giants. Prior to his miss Cundiff was 68-71 (a 95.8 % rate) in his career on field goals of 32 yards or shorter including a perfect 8-8 postseason record. "It's a kick I've kicked probably a thousand times in my career," Cundiff said. "I went out there and didn't convert. That's the way things go."

Brady's 1-yard touchdown dive with 11:29 left was the last score of the game, as both defenses were able to keep their team in the game. The Pats won ugly, as Brady had two interceptions and no touchdowns, the first time in 36 games without a TD, and the Pats had three turnovers overall. Joe Flacco was 22 for 36, good for 306 yards and two touchdowns, with an interception, but star running back Ray Rice had just 78 yards.

With the win, Brady tied Joe Montana for most postseason wins in NFL history, a record he broke with the Patriot's victory over the Texans in the Divisional Round of the 2013 season.

  • #8
  • Matchup: Baltimore Ravens vs. Houston Texans - 2012 AFC Divisional Playoffs
  • Average ticket price: $268
  • Location: M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore
  • Final score: Texans 13, Ravens 20
  • Attendance: 71,547

The Ravens were able to hold of a late Houston rally and went on to meet the Patriots in the AFC Championship (see above). The Ravens defense did most of the heavy lifting once Baltimore was up 17 - 3 after the first quarter. The Ravens didn't have any penalties, didn't commit a turnover, and intercepted the Texan's TJ Yates three times with four total takeaways.

  • #9
  • Matchup: Arizona Cardinals vs. Philadelphia Eagles - 2009 NFC Championship Game
  • Average ticket price: $265
  • Location: University Of Phoenix Stadium, Glendale
  • Final score: Eagles 25, Cardinals 32
  • Attendance: 70,650

Arizona's Larry Fitzgerald was the star in this game with three touchdowns in the first-half, the first receiver ever to accomplish that feat in a post-season game, capping an incredible season in which he had 419 yards and passed Jerry Rice for the all-time single season record. The win put the Cardinals, a founding member of the NFL, into the Super Bowl for the first time in franchise history, however Arizona went on to loose to the Steelers in the Super Bowl.

The Cardinals had been blown out by the Eagles 48-20 earlier in the season. Arizona was looking at an easy victory entering halftime up 17-3, but the Eagles were much better in the second half, with QB Donovan McNabb leading the Eagles to a 25-24 lead after being down 18 points. McNabb would end the game with 475 yards and three touchdowns and one interception, but his performance wasn't enough to deny Fitzgerald and the Cardinals.

  • #10
  • Matchup: Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Baltimore Ravens - 2009 AFC Championship Game
  • Average ticket price: $264
  • Location: Heinz Field, Pittsburgh
  • Final score: Ravens 14, Steelers 23
  • Attendance: 65,350

A new chapter in this vicious rivalry was written that day, as it was rookie Joe Flacco's first season. Had the Ravens prevailed he would have been the first rookie to take a team to the Super Bowl. But alas Flacco had three interceptions, one of which Troy Polamalu returned for a touchdown. Baltimore's Willis McGahee has both the teams touchdowns. The win marked the third time the Steelers beat the Ravens in the season. Baltimore was able to make it a game, coming back from a 13-0 deficit, but the Steelers buckled down to grind out the win. The Steelers went on to beat the Cardinals in Super Bowl XLIII.

  • #11
  • Matchup: Atlanta Falcons vs. San Francisco 49ers - 2013 NFC Conference Championship
  • Average ticket price: $263
  • Location: Georgia Dome, Atlanta
  • Final score: TBA
  • #12
  • Matchup: Indianapolis Colts vs. New York Jets - 2010 AFC Championship Game
  • Average ticket price: $254
  • Location: Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis
  • Final score: Jets 17, Colts 30
  • #13
  • Matchup: New Orleans Saints vs. Detroit Lions - 2012 NFC Wild Card
  • Average ticket price: $243
  • Location: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans
  • Final score: Lions 28, Saints 45
  • #14
  • Matchup: San Francisco 49ers vs. New Orleans Saints - 2012 NFC Divisional Playoffs
  • Average ticket price: $241
  • Location: Candlestick Park, San Francisco
  • Final score: Saints 32, 49ers 36
  • #15
  • Matchup: New England Patriots vs. New York Jets - 2011 AFC Divisional Playoffs
  • Average ticket price: $236
  • Location: Gillette Stadium, Foxborough
  • Final score: Jets 28, Patriots 21
  • #16
  • Matchup: Denver Broncos vs. Baltimore Ravens - 2013 AFC Divisional Game
  • Average ticket price: $231
  • Location: Sports Authority Field At Mile High, Denver
  • Final score: Ravens 38, Broncos 35
  • #17
  • Matchup: New England Patriots vs. Denver Broncos - 2012 AFC Divisional Playoffs
  • Average ticket price: $227
  • Location: Gillette Stadium, Foxborough
  • Final score: Broncos 10, Patriots 45
  • #18
  • Matchup: New England Patriots vs. Houston Texans - 2013 AFC Divisional Game
  • Average ticket price: $224
  • Location: Gillette Stadium, Foxborough
  • Final score: Texas 28, Patriots 41
  • #19
  • Matchup: San Francisco 49ers vs. Green Bay Packers - 2013 NFC Divisional Game
  • Average ticket price: $223
  • Location: Candlestick Park, San Francisco
  • Final score: Packers 31, 49ers 45
  • #20
  • Matchup: Green Bay Packers vs. New York Giants - 2012 NFC Divisional Playoffs
  • Average ticket price: $220
  • Location: Lambeau Field, Green Bay
  • Final score: Giants 37, Packers 20

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