Eagles' defense locks down to stop Falcons

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The Eagles (14-3) will now face either the New Orleans Saints or the Minnesota Vikings in the NFC Championship game January 21 in Philadelphia. "We just have to make them come to life".

It was the first home playoff victory for the Eagles in more than 11 years.

Philadelphia get it done without WentzQuarterback Nick Foles #9 of the Philadelphia Eagles looks to pass against the Atlanta Falcons.

Foles heated up after a poor first half, but the Eagles settled for field goals after two long drives in the second half.

The Eagles cut it to 10-9 with 1 second left in the half.

With one of the NFL's marquee players in 6-foot-3, 220-pound wide receiver Julio Jones on the field, it was not hard to figure out where the ball was going.

Doug Pederson is now in the NFC Championship Game, despite leading a team without Carson Wentz, Jason Peters, Jordan Hicks, and Darren Sproles. They let the Eagles and Foles convert several big third downs and were outplayed in the trenches.

The Falcons lacked efficiency on both sides of the ball and struggled to find a rhythm in the game's most crucial moments.

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Locked in a tight game early in the fourth quarter, Denver used a 12-2 run to break it open and went on to beat visiting Memphis. The Cavs rank 29th in defensive rating, giving up 109.5 points per 100 possessions, better only than the 13-28 Sacramento Kings.

Ryan finished the game 22-for-36 for 210 yards. Ryan found Jones for 20 yards, and this time, there was no dispute. He threw for 70 of the Eagles' 74-yard field-goal drive to give them their first lead of the game in the waning seconds of the third quarter, connecting on a number of run-pass option plays that the Falcons had trouble stopping.

"We have the best defense in the league", boasted running back Jay Ajayi, who carried the ball 15 times for 54 yards and caught three passes for an additional 44.

That was exemplified against the Eagles (14-3), who like the Falcons sputtered in the red zone.

In the second quarter, the Eagles scored a touchdown on a one yard run from LeGarrette Blunt.

The announced crowd of 69,596 cheered every one of Foles' 23 completions, his attempts to jump-start the Eagles' offense and his near-touchdown dive in the game's early stages. Philadelphia's 14-play, 80-yard drive stalled at the 3 and instead of going for it on fourth-and-1, they opted for the field goal. That was right after Foles had to fall on a fumble the play before, a pretty fortunate turn of events. Foles would hit Alshon Jeffery for 15 yards two snaps later to set up a 53-yard field goal from Jake Elliott that trimmed Atlanta's lead to one before halftime. The Eagles drove 37 yards in 46 seconds, thanks to a wild dropped interception by the Falcons' Keanu Neal.

The Falcons had a first and goal situation with less than two minutes to go, but quarterback Matt Ryan was unable to engineer the touchdown that would have given the Falcons a 16-10 lead.

Eagles tight end Zach Ertz tipped his hat to the remaining NFC opponents, but says he and his teammates will be ready for whoever survives Sunday's divisional game. After losing a fumble on the opening drive, Ajayi was a workhorse early on, racking up 58 of Philly's first 60 yards including 49 on the ground in the first quarter. And now Foles is one game away from the Super Bowl. He'll now have a chance to play for a spot in Super Bowl LII in three weeks.

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