ce the playoff-bou
ce the playoff-bouin Deutsch in Medien und Literatur 29.08.2018 03:50
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鈥?Nick Foles was steady Youth Mike Hughes Jersey , Jake Elliott had a big leg and the defense made one final stop.The underdog Philadelphia Eagles are heading to the NFC championship game following a 15-10 victory over the Atlanta Falcons on Saturday. They’ll host the Saints-Vikings winner next Sunday.Despite going 13-3 to earn the No. 1 seed, the Eagles entered the game as 3-point underdogs against the sixth-seeded Falcons (11-7). They used it as motivation and now it’s onto the next one as they continue pursuit of the franchise’s first Super Bowl title.“If we believe the outsiders, we will be all messed up,” Pro Bowl defensive tackle Fletcher Cox said. “We went out and proved we can be the real winning team.”Matt Ryan’s final pass sailed through Julio Jones’ arms in the corner of the end zone as Jalen Mills had tight coverage on fourth down from the 2 to secure Philadelphia’s win. It was another disappointing finish for the Falcons, who blew a 25-point lead against the Patriots in last year’s Super Bowl.“The reason I play this game is to win a championship,” Ryan said. “That’s why we put all of the hard work we put in. When you don’t get that result, it’s difficult.”Foles outplayed Ryan, bouncing back from a pair of subpar games with an efficient performance. He completed 77 percent of his passes (23 of 30) for 246 yards, no touchdowns and no turnovers.“The biggest thing in our locker room is that we believe in one another and that showed,” Foles said. “We kept working Derwin James Jersey Chargers , kept grinding, had faith in one another. In any sport there’s going to be criticism. You’re aware of it because you’re human but we blocked it out.”Here’s some things we learned following Philadelphia’s first playoff win in nine years:OVERCOMING TURNOVERS: The Eagles committed the only two turnovers and won anyway. Jay Ajayi fumbled on the second play from scrimmage inside Falcons territory and a short punt bounced off an Eagles player setting up Atlanta’s 18-yard touchdown drive.INCONSISTENT OFFENSE: These weren’t the Falcons who lit up the scoreboard on their way to winning the NFC championship last year. Under first-year offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian, the Falcons weren’t quite as sharp throughout the season and their inconsistency showed up at the wrong time. They were shut out in the second half and held to just 118 yards in the final two quarters.“I think that’s something we have to look at and evaluate this offseason,” Ryan said. “There were too many times we were a little bit inconsistent.”JAY TRAIN: Ajayi shook off the fumble and ran well until he inexplicably went to the bench for a long stretch. Ajayi had 50 yards rushing on eight carries through Philadelphia’s first drive of the second quarter, but didn’t get the ball again until the second half. He finished with 54 yards on 15 carries and also dropped a third down pass. He did have 44 yards receiving on three catches.“I feel like I played poorly,” Ajayi said. “The fumble, can’t do that in a big game. I feel like I could have executed a lot better. A lot of the teammates picked up the slack. The defense played lights out.”CALL OF THE GAME: Eagles coach Doug Pederson ran an inside counter to wide receiver Nelson Agholor that went for 21 yards to the Falcons 3 on third-and-3 on Philadelphia’s touchdown drive. It was the first time he called that play this season.“It’s a play we’ve had in our arsenal, but never got to it,” Pederson said. “This was just an opportunity to put it in Nelson’s hands with Lane Johnson as a puller and just executed extremely well.”JAKE’S LEG: Elliott, who joined the Eagles after Caleb Sturgis was injured in Week 1 Authentic Lorenzo Carter Jersey , bounced back after missing his fourth extra point of the season by connecting on all three of his field goals. His 53-yarder at the end of the first half was his sixth in seven tries from beyond 50. That includes a game-winning 61-yarder against the Giants in Week 3.“It was definitely tricky out there, just really gusty (wind),” Elliott said. “You don’t know what it’s really going to do out there so you just have to hit the best ball you can and take care of what you can control.”AP Pro Football Writer Barry Wilner contributed.AP NFL website: In a game that didn’t feel much like the postseason, the Washington Capitals gave future playoff opponents fair warning about how they handle tight games.
Outshot by a team eliminated from contention, Washington stayed close before tying it late and beating the New York Rangers 3-2 in overtime on Wednesday night. Braden Holtby stopped 35 of 37 shots, Lars Eller forced overtime and Evgeny Kuznetsov won it to push the Metropolitan Division-leading Capitals closer to their fourth consecutive playoff appearance.
Even if it wasn’t the kind of showing the Capitals would like to have come playoff time, Eller’s goal with 1:50 left and Kuznetsov’s 38 seconds into overtime showed what they could do when it matters.
”I think we play better when it’s close,” Holtby said. ”With our skill, I think it forces us to turn things on late in the game and I think guys take that as a challenge. That’s I think a reason why you can see us bring it to a next level to try and force the other team into feeling a bit of panic and open up space.”
There was little panic in the Rangers, who were playing their first game with no playoff implications since 2004 Cheap B.J. Hill Jersey , and they turned that looseness into a 37-33 shot advantage. Henrik Lundqvist made 30 saves and Kevin Hayes and Ryan Spooner scored, but New York lamented a defensive miscue on Eller’s goal that let the game slip away.
”So frustrating,” Lundqvist said after his first game with no hope of playoffs in his NHL career. ”When you’re tied up that late after playing so hard and doing so many good things, it doesn’t matter where you are in the standings, you want to win games and sit in here and feel good about a win. They came back and got it. It bothers me.”
After the Capitals came back and got two valuable points, they can clinch with help around the league or by picking up a point Friday at home against Carolina. There are lower expectations on Washington this year after back-to-back Presidents’ Trophies and second-round exits, but Holtby said making the playoffs was a goal at the start of the season.
It’s within reach now.
”It’s the first step on the way,” Eller said. ”We want to win our division and go into the playoffs on a high note.”
Holtby looks like he could be heading into the playoffs on a high note after almost two months of struggles and a minor lower-body injury. He would have liked to stop Spooner’s third-period goal on a shot that beat him clean, but with a question of whether Holtby or Philipp Grubauer will start, it helped that the 2016 Vezina Trophy winner finally looks like his normal self again.
”I felt comfortable Richard Rodgers Jersey Elite ,” Holtby said. ”It’s something I’m not used to – not playing much. The stamina and such was a little different than I was used to, but it felt good to go out there and just get to work and play in a high-intensity game.”
There are many more high-intensity games to come for the Capitals, who can soon exhale about making the playoffs and prepare for the next step.
”The NHL how it is, it doesn’t really matter where you are in the standings,” Holtby said. ”The guys should be proud. We should be proud we’re in a position like that.”
NOTES: Rangers assistant Lindy Ruff missed the game after hitting his head on the ice at practice Thursday. Coach Alain Vigneault said Ruff was hospitalized and diagnosed with a concussion but was in good spirits and expected to be back with the team in a few days. … F Shane Gersich, a 2014 fifth-round pick who signed with Washington last week after his season at North Dakota ended, made his NHL debut. … Pheonix Copley backed up Holtby because Grubauer felt a ”tweak” in the Capitals’ game at the Rangers on Tuesday, according to coach Barry Trotz.
Rangers: Return home to face the playoff-bound Tampa Bay Lightning on Friday night.
Capitals: Host the Carolina Hurricanes on Friday night.
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