NFL: Tom Brady leads Tampa Bay Buccaneers to Super Bowl with win over Green Bay Packers

Tom Brady has passed for three touchdown passes and will return to the Super Bowl for the 10th time, after helping Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeat hosts Green Bay Packers 31-26 in the NFC Championship.

Shaquil Barrett recorded three sacks and Jason Pierre-Paul added two, as the Buccaneers built a 17-point lead en route to reaching the Super Bowl for the second time in franchise history.

Tampa Bay also reached the big game in the 2002 season and walloped then-Oakland Raiders 48-21 for its only Super Bowl title.

They'll play the Kansas City Chiefs for a shot at NFL glory, after star quarterback Patrick Mahomes led the defending champions to a 38-24 win over Buffalo Bills in the AFC Championship game.

The Buccaneers will become the first team to play a Super Bowl in its home stadium, with the game set for February 8 in Tampa, Florida.

Brady completed 20 of 36 passes for 280 yards and survived three second-half interceptions.

Cameron Brate, Mike Evans and Scotty Miller caught touchdown passes, Leonard Fournette rushed for a score and Jordan Whitehead forced two fumbles, before departing with a left shoulder injury.

Aaron Rodgers completed 33 of 48 passes for 346 yards, three touchdowns and one interception for the Packers. Davante Adams, Marquez Valdes-Scantling and Robert Tonyan caught touchdown passes, and Jaire Alexander had two interceptions.

Green Bay reached the Tampa Bay eight-yard line late in the game, but questionably settled for Mason Crosby's 26-yard field goal with 2m 05s left to move within five points. The Buccaneers got the ball back and picked up three first downs, while running out the clock.

Brady improved to 10-4 in conference championship games, while Rodgers dropped his fourth straight to fall to 1-4.

Green Bay experienced a devastating sequence over the final 34 seconds of the first half to trail 21-10 at the break.

The Packers were down four and facing second-and-18 from their own 32-yard line, when Rodgers was intercepted by Sean Murphy-Bunting.

The turnover became costly, when Miller sped past Green Bay's Kevin King and Brady connected with him from 39 yards out with one second left to account for the 11-point halftime advantage.

More misfortune occurred on the Packers' initial possession of the third quarter. Aaron Jones caught a short pass, but Whitehead dislodged the ball at the Green Bay 32, and teammate Devin White (15 tackles) recovered it at the 29 and ran 21 yards to the eight.

On the ensuing play, Brady tossed an 8-yard scoring pass to Brate to make it 28-10 just 66 seconds into the second half.

Rodgers threw an eight-yard scoring pass to Tonyan with 9:28 left to cut the Tampa Bay lead to 11. Adrian Amos then intercepted Brady and the Packers cashed in, with Rodgers hitting Adams on a two-yard scoring pass to pull within 28-23 with 24 seconds left in the stanza.

Alexander picked off Brady twice in the first six minutes of the fourth quarter, but the Packers were forced to punt on both occasions.

Ryan Succop booted a 46-yard field goal to give Tampa Bay a 31-23 lead with 4m 42s remaining.

The Buccaneers started strong by taking the opening kickoff 66 yards on nine plays, with Brady tossing a 15-yard scoring pass to Evans. Green Bay tied the score in the opening minute of the second quarter, when Rodgers threw a 50-yard touchdown pass to Valdes-Scantling.

Tampa Bay moved ahead on Fournette's 20-yard run with 12m 24s left in the half. The Packers crept within 14-10 on Crosby's 24-yard field goal with 4m 59s left.

After getting cleared from concussion protocol, Chiefs' Mahomes still played with 'turf toe' on his left foot, but completed 29 of 38 attempts, as the Chiefs gained an opportunity for a title defence with a comprehensive victory over the Bills.

Tom Brady and Patrick Mahomes will face off in Tampa Bay next month.
Tom Brady and Patrick Mahomes will face off in Tampa Bay next month. Photo credit: Getty

Kansas City will attempt to become the first back-to-back NFL champions since the 2003-04 New England Patriots.

The Chiefs went three-and-out on their opening possession, then overturned a 9-0 deficit with second-quarter touchdown drives of 82, 80 and 77 yards.

Taking away a one-play kneel down to end the first half, Kansas City scored on six straight possessions, while going five-for-five on touchdowns in the red zone.

Tyreek Hill raced 172 yards on nine receptions, including a 71-yard gain. Travis Kelce added 13 catches for 118 yards and two scores, as the Chiefs amassed 439 yards of offence.

Buffalo's Josh Allen completed 28 of 48 passes for 287 yards and two touchdowns, while rushing for 88 yards, but fourth-quarter interceptions by Rashad Fenton and Bashaud Breeland (on a two-point conversion attempt) proved disastrous.

The Bills converted just two of five red zone opportunities into touchdowns and settled for four field goals from Tyler Bass. Cole Beasley grabbed a team-high seven catches for 88 yards.