Lowell Cohn: 49ers, Panthers will take game to bruising depths

  • San Francisco 49ers linebacker Dan Skuta (51) tackles Carolina Panthers running back Jonathan Stewart (28) during an NFL football game in San Francisco, Sunday, Nov. 10, 2013. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -#8212; I'll describe today's 49ers-Panthers division-round playoff game the best way I know. Through boxing. Yeah, boxing.

Specifically 1976. Specifically George Foreman vs. Ron Lyle at Caesars. Two heavyweights. Big men. Lyle weighing 220, Foreman 226. Big punchers. No messing around. No finesse. The heck with finesse. You punch me. I punch you.

See how you like it.

Last man standing.

They hurt each other the first three rounds. Staggering like fighters in a Stallone movie. Foreman knocked down Lyle in the fourth round. Lyle knocked down Foreman twice in the fourth round. The second time he planted Foreman's face in the canvas. Looked like Foreman's face would sink through the canvas or he would fall asleep on his bloody, sweaty face.

Foreman got up. Are you kidding me? Lasted the round. The fight continued.

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