Saints vs. Seahawks final score: Seattle will host NFC Championship after 23-15 win over New Orleans

Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

Marshawn Lynch and a dominant defensive performance will keep Seattle in contention for its first Super Bowl appearance since 2005.

The 12th man will host the NFC championship game.

Behind a dominant defensive performance, the Seattle Seahawks suffocated the Saints offense for the second time this season, dispatching the NFC's sixth-seeded Saints 23-15 Saturday.

The Seahawks' Legion of Boom secondary held the Saints' high-powered passing game in check most of the afternoon, holding All Pro tight end Jimmy Graham to one catch on the day.

Marshawn Lynch had a 31-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter to seal the win - dragging former Steelers cornerback Keenan Lewis for the last 15 yards. It appeared Lewis was waiting for help with the tackle, but none was available. That was the case for much of the game, as Lynch ran for 141 yards and two touchdowns.

New Orleans made it interesting, scoring a late touchdown and recovering an onside kick. Marques Colston made an odd choice to attempt a 30-yard pass across the field with seven second left on the clock. It was correctly ruled a forward pass, and after the 10-second runoff, the game was over.

The Seahawks will host the winner of Sunday's 49ers at Panthers game on the other side of the bracket.

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