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NFL in Long Beach: Three Poly Alums Make Championship Weekend

Long Beach Poly will be well represented in this Sunday’s AFC and NFC championship games, with three Jackrabbit alums vying for a chance to make the Super Bowl.

For the Tennessee Titans, traveling to Kansas City for the AFC title, Jayon Brown and Jurrell Casey will both represent their alma mater in a 12:05 p.m. game televised on CBS.

Brown, a standout on the Titans defense this year with more than 100 tackles, missed last week due to injury but is expected to return to the lineup this Sunday. The Titans will need him against a standout Chiefs offense that has KC favored by 7.5 points. The Titans were also underdogs against the Patriots and Ravens in their first two playoff games.

The other Poly alum that’s a standout defensive player for the Titans is defensive tackle Jurrell Casey, a Pro Bowl alternate who had a big sack last week of likely NFL MVP Lamar Jackson. 

In the NFC championship game, set to air at 3:40 p.m. on FOX, Poly alum Marcedes Lewis will try to help the Packers pull an upset of the 49ers, who host the game and are favored by 7.5 points.

Lewis is a blocking tight end for the Packers in his 14th NFL season, now at second on the all-time NFL games played list for Long Beach products with 201 games, only seven behind Willie McGinest’s all-time mark of 208.

Lewis cleared a path for a touchdown in the Packers’ win over the Seahawks and got a lot of love from commentator Troy Aikman for the play last weekend.

Mike Guardabascio
An LBC native, Mike Guardabascio has been covering Long Beach sports professionally for 13 years, with his work published in dozens of Southern California magazines and newspapers. He's won numerous awards for his writing as well as the CIF Southern Section’s Champion For Character Award, and is the author of three books about Long Beach history.