After a sloppy and frustrating start to the 2019 season, the Falcons returned home with the hope of cleansing the palate and getting back to .500. The only problem: They had to face a dynamic Eagles team with a stout defensive front. Atlanta desperately needed the win to stay out of the dreaded 0-2 bucket. Here’s how the game played out.
After the Eagles won the coin toss and deferred, Matt Ryan and the Falcons offense took the field. Devonta gained three yards on the initial play followed by a first down catch by Austin Hooper. Devonta Freeman picked up six on the subsequent first. A pass to Mohamed Sanu converted the short first down. Freeman continued his strong start with a big 9-yard gain. Ito Smith converts the short first down to keep the sticks moving.
Austin Hooper makes another big gain with a catch for 14 yards. The success comes to a halt as Devonta Freeman loses 6 yards on a toss play. After an incomplete pass to Ito Smith, on 3rd and 16, Matt Ryan connects with Calvin Ridley for no gain. Ageless wonder Matt Bryant comes out and nails the 50 yard field goal.
Falcons 3 - Eagles 0
Carson Wentz and the Eagles offense took the field after the kickoff is returned to the 29. Wentz completes to Zach Ertz for a quick 8 yard gain. Myles Sanders is stopped for no gain on the run by Isaiah Oliver. On third and 2, Wentz’s pass goes incomplete, but a penalty on Atlanta keeps the drive alive. After a false start, the Eagles gain four to bring up 2nd and 11. Another four yard run brings up 3rd and 7. The pass to Nelson Agholor goes incomplete and Philadelphia has to punt. A great special teams play puts Atlanta’s offense on their own one yard line to start their next drive.
The Falcons start with a false start by Alex Mack, followed by a pass to Ito Smith for 5 yards. A pass to Julio goes incomplete, though fans wanted the PI call. Dan Quinn agreed and threw the red challenge flag, which did not overturn the play. On third and 5, Matt Ryan connected with Calvin Ridley for a big 18 yard gain and a first down. After an incomplete pass to Russell Gage, Devonta Freeman is tackled for a four yard loss, forcing a third and 15. The dump off pass to Freeman gains 6 yards and the Falcons are forced to punt, which is fair caught at the Eagles 43.
The Eagles strike fast with a quick 8 yard pass to Ertz followed by a short run by Jordan Howard to convert the first down. After a 2 yard run by Howard, Keanu Neal deflects a pass intended for Zach Ertz setting up 3rd and 8. The Falcons defensive line puts pressure on Wentz, who throws an interception to Desmond Trufant. Falcons offense takes over on their own 9.
The Falcons start with a short run by Freeman for no gain. Ryan’s pass on 2nd down is incomplete after being tipped setting up 3rd and 10. Matt Ryan throws a bullet, but Julio Jones is unable to bring it in. The offense fails to capitalize on the turnover and punts. The Eagles take over on the Falcons 43 after an 8 yard return.
The Eagles setup 2nd and 5 after a run and the quarter comes to an end.
Falcons 3 - Eagles 0
On second and five, the Eagles pick up the first on a run. After a short run by Wentz, the Eagles setup 3rd and 1 with a 9 yard pass to Zach Ertz. The Eagles convert the first down with a pass for 12 yards to Nelson Agholor. After an incompletion to Ertz, and a short run, the 3rd and 6 is shutdown when Grady Jarrett sacked Carson Wentz for the 8 yard loss. The Eagles kick the 34-yard field goal and tie up the game.
Falcons 3 - Eagles 3
After the kickoff, the Falcons offense takes over on their 25. A dump off pass to Ito Smith is meaningless after a holding penalty setups up first and 20. Matt Ryan makes up 19 of those yards on a pass to Julio Jones, setting up 2nd and 1. The wide receiver screen to Julio gets just enough yards to get the first down. A four yard run by Freeman is followed by a nearly intercepted pass by Fletcher Cox. On third and 6, Julio Jones proves he’s not human when he pulls in an unbelievable catch for 27 yards. The Falcons immediately throw to Ridley, who gains 1 yard, but right tackle Kaleb McGary appeared to be injured during the play. On the next play, Matt Ryan just misses the TD pass to Calvin Ridley. On third and 9, Ryan is pressured and is unable to connect on a lofted pass to Justin Hardy. Matt Bryant comes on for the 50-yard field goal and it is no good.
The Eagles take over on their own 40, but the first pass goes directly to Desmond Trufant for his second interception of the night. A hold on the return sets the Falcons back 10 yards, but the turnover stands.
The Falcons offense takes over on their 35 and quickly pick up 15 on the pass to Calvin Ridley. Ryan hits Ridley again for a 12 yard gain out of the no huddle. Devonta Freeman gains one on the run, but a false start puts the offense back to 2nd and 14. The pass to Ito Smith gains 8, setting up 3rd and 6. Ryan connects on a big touchdown pass to Calvin Ridley, giving the Falcons the lead.
Falcons 10 - Eagles 3
The Eagles offense takes over at their 25 after a nice return. After an incomplete pass, the Eagles offense goes backwards after a holding penalty setting up 2nd and 20. The Falcons bail out the Eagles with a defensive holding penalty. After a four yard gain to Arcega-Whiteside, and a two yard run by Jordan Howard, Carson Wentz connects with Nelson Agholor to keep the sticks moving. After the 2 minute warning, Isaiah Oliver nearly picks off Wentz, but it drops for an incompletion. Another incompletion sets up 3rd and 10, which results in an incomplete pass by Wentz, setting up the punt. Kenjon Barnes fields the punt and returns it for a decent gain, which is offset by a holding penalty. Atlanta takes over on their own 6 yard line with 1:33 to go.
Ryan quickly connects for a 7 yard gain to TE Austin Hooper, then finds Calvin Ridley for a 12 yard gain. After an incompletion intended for Hooper, Ryan’s pass to Mohamed Sanu bounces off his hands and is intercepted. Eagles take over on the Atlanta 41 with 43 seconds left and 3 timeouts.
Eagles take the field with Josh McCown in at QB, who completes a quick pass to Miles Sanders for a 7 yard gain. A gain of 4 on another pass to Sanders is followed by an incompletion. A 4 yard run by Sanders sets up 3rd and 6, when McCown completes the pass to Zach Ertz for a gain of 13. After an incompletion, Wentz comes back in and throws an incompletion to Agholor, defended well by Ricardo Allen. On 3rd and 10, Wentz is pressured and throws an incompletion. Philadelphia gets called for a hold, setting up 3rd and 20 with only 3 seconds left. The Eagles bring out the kicking unit and nail the 41-yard attempt to close out the first half.
Falcons 10 - Eagles 6
The Eagles start the second half by fumbling the kickoff return, which is recovered by the Sharrod Neasman for the Falcons. The Falcons offense quickly takes the field on the Philly 33 and Devonta Freeman takes the short pass from Ryan all the way to the Eagles 5. After a run for one yard, Matt Ryan finds Julio Jones in the end zone for the four yard touchdown. Matt Bryant punches in the extra point.
Falcons 17 - Eagles 6
The Eagles take over on their own 29 after a nice return by Miles Sanders. After a run for one yard by Jordan Howard, Wentz connects with Mack Hollins for a 8 yard gain. On 3rd and 1, Miles Sanders picks up the first on a 5 yard run. A holding penalty sets up 1st and 20 for the Eagles. After an incompletion forced by pressure from Takk McKinley, the Eagles gain 9 yards on a pass to Nelson Agholor. Third and 11 ends with an incompletion as Wentz is pressured again. Falcons force the punt. A short return is set back by another holding penalty by the Falcons, who end up starting on their own 9 yard line.
The Falcons offense starts with a hold, setting up 1st and 14 from the 5. A Matt Ryan scramble sets up 2nd and 10, which becomes 3rd and 9 after an Ito Smith run. Ryan’s pass is intercepted, putting the Eagles offense in prime position to score again.
The Eagles offense takes over on the Falcons 27 and after a 3 yard run by Miles Sanders, Wentz connects with Zach Ertz for a 16 yard gain. With 1st and goal to go from the 8, Sanders is tackled for a 2 yard loss by Deion Jones. On 2nd down, Wentz was lucky to get an incomplete pass off, otherwise he would have been sacked by McKinley. Wentz avoids the pressure and completes a short pass to Mack Hollins. The Eagles decide to go for it on 4th and 4 and get the touchdown as Wentz finds Nelson Agholor in the back of the end zone. The Eagles go for a two point conversion and fail to convert it on a Carson Wentz run.
Falcons 17 - Eagles 12
The Falcons offense takes over after the touchback. A pass to Luke Stocker is fumbled, but recovered by Mohamed Sanu for a 9 yard gain. After Devonta Freeman picks up the short first down, Ryan connects with Calvin Ridley for a 14 yard gain. Austin Hooper rumbles for four yards and Mohamed Sanu makes some nice moves for a 6 yard gain and another first down. A deep pass to Ridley doesn’t connect, but Ito Smith makes up the difference on a incredible 28 yard run. Freeman comes in for a four yard gain but Ryan is intercepted for the third time on the evening after being pressured.
The Eagles take over on their own 10 after a touchback and a personal foul penalty against them. A quick 6 yard pass to Zach Ertz brings us to the end of the quarter. Oh god, I hate this feeling.
Falcons 17 - Eagles 12
The Eagles end up in 3rd and 5 after a run for a loss by Jordan Howard. Wentz is pressured in the pocket yet again but still manages to throw an incompletion. Falcons defense forces the punt on 4th and 11. Kenjon Barner brings it back to the Falcons 45, where Matt “WTF Interceptions” Ryan and the offense take the field again.
The Atlanta Interceptions offense starts their first drive of the fourth quarter with a 4 yard run by Freeman. Ryan completes a pass to Mohamed Sanu that loses 3 yards, setting up 3rd and 9. The drive dies as Matt Ryan is sacked on a blitz from Andrew Sendejo.
The Eagles take over on their 27 and complete an 8 yard pass to Jordan Howard. A holding penalty on Philadelphia puts them back at 2nd and 12, which becomes 3rd and 3 after a 9 yard pass to Nelson Agholor. The Eagles keep the sticks moving with a 16 yard pass to Agholor. On the subsequent 3rd and 6, completes the pass to Mack Hollins for a 16 yard gain. On 2nd and 7, Foye Oluokun stops a pass for a 2 yard loss, setting up 3rd and 9. Wentz avoids intense pressure and finds Hollins for a big gain and the first down. After a 5 yard pass to Ertz, and a 4 yard run by Sanders, Wentz sneaks it for the first down. On first and goal from the one, the Eagles punch it in with a touchdown run by Carson Wentz. The Eagles go for 2 and convert.
Falcons 17 - Eagles 20
With 3:13 left in the game, the Eagles punt to the Falcons. The Atlanta Disappointments offense takes the field at their own 25. Ryan completes a 9 yard pass to Freeman to start the critical drive. After an incompletion, the Eagles gift the Falcons with an encroachment penalty. An incomplete pass to Julio is followed by a 7 yard completion to Sanu. Ryan is pressured into a quick throw to Freeman that goes incomplete. On 4th and 3, Matt finds Julio for a 54-yard touchdown. Unbelievable.
Falcons 24 - Eagles 20
The Eagles offense takes over at their own 35 after a nice return. Wentz completes to Agholor for 8 yards and we hit the 2 minute warning. On 2nd and 2, Wentz hits Agholor deep, but he drops it. It would have been an easy touchdown otherwise. On 3rd and 2, Wentz completes the pass to Sproles to move the sticks. After a dropped pass by Sproles and an incompletion to Ertz,
Final Score: Falcons 24 - Eagles 20
The Falcons held on to pull off a close win at home. They made the plays they needed to, and they came through when it mattered. That’s not necessarily a thing we’ve seen from this team over the years, but we got it tonight.