All three teams were 12-4 with established head coaches and had "underperformed" the seasons before.
Both teams added D-linemen seeking one more chance at a title, just like the 20 Hawks.
Both teams had big defensive contributions from young relatively unknown players. Antonie Bethea was a 6th round pick, Greg Townsend had 10 sacks as a 4th round pick. Alton Robinson 5th rounder.
Both teams faced their new and old rivals in the playoffs, the Hawks are looking at a Rams and Packers road to the bowl.
Long story short sometimes it is the team that just catches fire around week 13 that is the team that wins the whole damn bowl.