Eagles stifle Falcons to reach NFC championship game

011218_Freeman-Falcons_usat

011218_Freeman-Falcons_usat

"They doubted us", said Larry Jansen about the odds of winning Saturday's game, "but it's a whole team that makes you have a victory, and that's what the Eagles did today".

The Falcons failed to score 20 points for the seventh time this season - all resulting in losses - as the offense struggled to put points on the board. Not only did they look akin to the team that went to the Super Bowl a year ago, but faced a Philadelphia Eagles team in Round 2 playing without their star quarterback, Carson Wentz. We just have to keep building off of it at the end of the day.

Even worse, inside the Eagles 10-yard line, with plenty of time left and two timeouts in their back pocket, Sark called four-straight pass plays, including a awful shovel pass - and did not run the ball one time.

Philadelphia caught a break on the previous play when Foles recovered a botched handoff.

On the opening drive, Foles attempted to go deep down the field, throwing a short risky pass to Torey Smith.

That was exemplified against the Eagles (14-3), who like the Falcons sputtered in the red zone. Some of those players are wide receivers Alshon Jeffery and Torrey Smith, running backs LeGarrette Blount and later Jay Ajayi, and defensive help like Chris Long and Timmy Jernigan.

The Atlanta Falcons almost won a Super Bowl a year ago behind the NFL's most potent offense. On the ensuing extra-point attempt, Elliott hit the left upright, missing the extra point attempt. While Philadelphia is +3.5 at the window, the juice on an Eagles wager is -115.

Devonta Freeman hauled in a 6-yard touchdown pass from Ryan for a 10-6 advantage with 5:41 left in the second quarter.

Most damaging for Atlanta was how it came up empty deep in Eagles territory on its final drive. The two teams last played in October 2016 as the Eagles came away with a 21-10 victory.

Firing Sarkisian is not only something that the Falcons should consider it is their only choice if they hope to improve next season.

Ryan finished the game 22-for-36 for 210 yards.

Overall, the Eagles rushed 32 times for 96 yards and one touchdown. Julio Jones was Julio Jones for Atlanta, catching nine passes for 101 yards.

Michel averaged seven yards on 14 carries.

Matt Ryan responded from an very bad throw/decision by avoiding a sack and completing a jump pass for a touchdown on the next play to Devonta Freeman.

The backup quarterback cut apart the Atlanta Falcons defense by completing high-percentage throws, most of which were within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage.

Foles was 23 of 30 for 246 yards.

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