Eagles players bark, wear dog masks after winning as underdogs

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Philadelphia stopped sixth-seeded Atlanta after they got to the nine with a first down, and then on fourth down from two-yards when Matt Ryan's pass slipped through the fingers of Julio Jones in the end zone. After a slow start, Foles had a turnaround second half finishing with 246 passing yards on an efficient 23-of-30 with zero turnovers for a 100.1 rating.

Foles will get at least one more chance to lead the Eagles offense this season and another win will make him an unlikely starting quarterback in the Super Bowl.

The Titans-Patriots victor will play the Jaguars-Steelers victor next Sunday in the AFC title game. "Yeah, absolutely. We're giving our shots to Matt and Julio to go for it to win the game".

"That's a play we practice all the time", Ryan said afterward (ESPN).

Head coach Dan Quinn defended Sarkisian, saying that the goal was to put the game in the hands of his two best players (Ryan and Jones). "You're in a competitive game like tonight".

Leading up to the game, much of the conversation had to do with how well the Eagles would do with Nick Foles under center.

Losing Wentz, an MVP candidate, was the biggest blow during a season in which several standout players were hurt. "This is my ninth year in the league and this is only my second time getting to this level, to this stage". Atlanta ran 11 first-down plays for just 20 yards, an average of 1.8 yards.

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"You don't get it many times", Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins said of playing in the NFC Championship game.

Even when things went right, it came from something that initially went wrong, like when Torrey Smith ran under a deflected pass late in the second quarter. If he didn't have the talent the Falcons have, he wouldn't have been able to bring them to a top 10 offense.

The Eagles had used a dominant rushing attack on a long drive to take the lead earlier in the 2nd quarter.

Foles directed brilliant marches of 74 and 80 yards in the second half - one into the whipping wind, the other with it - and Elliott atoned for missing an extra point by converting from 53 yards at the end of the second quarter, 37 and 21 in the second half.

In Wentz' absence, the Eagles registered a 19-10 win over the Oakland Raiders and a 6-0 defeat to the Dallas Cowboys, with backup quarterback Nick Foles. Freeman (10 carries, 7 yards) and Coleman (10 carries, 79 yards) made a few big plays but the defense held tight and they were the reason the Eagles advanced, not Foles.

That's what it looked like with 1:05 left and Atlanta on the Eagles' two-yard line. The Falcons then began to mount a decent drive that started at their own 12-yard line but the Eagles defense held and forced them to punt. It was his 10th career postseason TD.

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