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Tarell Brown’s friendly rivalry cut short by collision

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Jason O. Watson/US Presswire
Drilled: Tarell Brown

Sunday’s NFC Championship Game against the New York Giants was more than the biggest game of 49ers cornerback Tarell Brown’s career. It was a shot to outduel his best friend, New York cornerback Aaron Ross.

“I’m definitely going out there to try to make more plays than him,” Brown said in the week leading up to the matchup. And it was in trying to make a big play where the friendship between the two Texas products showed.

In going up for an interception late in the third quarter, Brown accidentally collided with teammate Dashon Goldson, who also was going for the interception. Brown went down in a heap, with neither he nor Goldson catching the ball.

“I didn’t feel like I was knocked out. It shocked me. It definitely shocked me for a second,” Brown said Monday, recalling a tingling feeling in his feet. “I didn’t get an opportunity to brace myself.”

The hit ended Brown’s day despite pleas to come back. But it was in those minutes that Ross stood on the opposite sideline, visibly worried about the health of his friend.

“He congratulated me, hoping I was alright,” Brown said. “We’re really close.”

And likewise, Brown congratulated Ross.

“I congratulated him, and good luck to the Giants and their team,” he said. “Anytime you can come into our place and fight like that, and believe like they said they believed … it was a hard fought game.”

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