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Foles, Eagles blast Vikes for NFC title

Field Level Media
January 21. 2018 10:12PM
Philadelphia Eagles running back LeGarrette Blount carries the ball past Minnesota Vikings strong safety Andrew Sendejo (34) and Vikings free safety Harrison Smith (22) to score a touchdown in the first half during the NFC Championship game at Lincoln Financial Field. (Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports)

PHILADELPHIA — Nick Foles tossed three touchdown passes, and the Philadelphia Eagles scored 38 unanswered points to defeat the Minnesota Vikings 38-7 in the NFC Championship on Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field.

LeGarrette Blount rushed for a touchdown, the Philadelphia defense forced two turnovers, and the Eagles advanced to the Super Bowl for the first time since the 2004-05 season, when they lost to the New England Patriots. The Eagles will face the Patriots once again with a chance at a Super Bowl title, this time on Feb. 4 in Minneapolis.

Minnesota had been in search of its first trip to the Super Bowl since the 1976 season and entered this game favored over the top-seeded Eagles.

Foles connected on a 41-yard touchdown with Torrey Smith on a flea flicker on the first drive of the third quarter as the Eagles extended their lead to 31-7.

Alshon Jeffery caught a 5-yard touchdown pass from Foles with 14:10 left in the fourth to cap the scoring. The Eagles moved 92 yards in 12 plays.

Philadelphia Eagles defensive back Corey Graham (24) , a former UNH star, intercepts a pass for Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Michael Floyd during the fourth quarter in the NFC Championship game at Lincoln Financial Field. (James Lang-USA TODAY Sports)

Minnesota moved effectively on its opening drive, going 75 yards on nine plays, culminating with a 25-yard touchdown pass from Case Keenum to Kyle Rudolph with 10:14 left in the first quarter.

The Eagles tied the game at 7 when defensive end Chris Long hit Keenum leading to a Patrick Robinson interception. Robinson returned the pick 50 yards for a score with 6:26 remaining in the first.

When Blount rumbled through the middle for an 11-yard touchdown run with 13:37 remaining in the second, the Eagles went ahead 14-7. The drive covered 75 yards in 12 plays.

The Vikings looked to tie the game — or at least kick a field goal — late in the first half, but Keenum was sacked by Derek Barnett on third-and-5 from the Philadelphia 16. Long recovered the fumble.

Foles proved his mettle on the ensuing possession as he tossed a spectacular 53-yard touchdown pass to Jeffery on third-and-10, giving the Eagles a 21-7 lead with 1:09 remaining in the half. Foles was able to move around long enough to be able to deliver the deep pass.

After the defense did its job, the Eagles didn't run out the clock. They quickly moved down the field and Jake Elliott booted a 38-yard field as time expired for a 24-7 lead at halftime.

The Eagles will look for the first Super Bowl title in franchise history. Before falling to the Patriots in Super Bowl XXXIX, they lost to the Oakland Raiders in Super Bowl XV following the 1980 season.


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