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Saints end Eagles repeat dream, Patriots blow out Chargers to set conference title games

Drew Brees and Michael Thomas ensured there would be no repeat for the Philadelphia Eagles Sunday.

Brees threw for 301 yards and two touchdowns while Thomas produced 12 receptions for 171 yards, which include the sport-winning landing, as the New Orleans Saints scored the ultimate 20 factors of the sport to defeat the defending champions 20-14 in the NFC divisional playoff.

The Saints will host the Los Angeles Rams in up coming week’s NFC Championship sport for the correct to go to Tremendous Bowl LIII in Atlanta. The New England Patriots will engage in the Kansas Metropolis Chiefs in the AFC Championship sport.

Eagles quarterback Nick Foles experienced just one ultimate likelihood to re-enact his heroics from past week’s wild-card gain in excess of the Chicago Bears, but the push stalled at the New Orleans 27-property line when his go went by the arms of Alshon Jeffery and into the arms of Marshon Lattimore for the sport-clinching interception.

Philadelphia stunned the Superdome crowd with touchdowns on their to start with two possessions immediately after Brees was intercepted on the game’s to start with engage in from scrimmage. Foles located Jordan Matthews with a 37-property landing go to cap a 76-property march immediately after the select by Cre’Von LeBlanc. After the Saints went 3-and-out on their second possession, Foles took the Eagles 75 yards in ten plays right before capping the push with a just one-property quarterback sneak to make the score 14- with 4:37 to engage in in the opening quarter.

The Saints necessary a spark and they got just one early in the second quarter when head mentor Sean Payton called a phony punt on 4th and 1 from the New Orleans 30-property line. Taysom Hill picked up four yards to hold the push alive and Brees located Keith Kirkwood on fourth-and-objective from the two-property line to reduce the Eagles direct to 14-7.

From there, New Orleans slowly took manage of the sport. They reduce the gap to 14-10 on a 45-property Wil Lutz area objective just right before the half. On the Saints’ to start with push of the second half, Brees led them on an epic 18-engage in, 92-property march that chewed up 11:29 right before getting Thomas from two yards out to place New Orleans up for good.

Lutz added a 39-property area objective to supply the ultimate margin of victory but skipped a 52-property try with 3 minutes remaining that would have produced it a two-score sport. That gave Foles and the Eagles just one much more possibility right before Lattimore intervened with his second interception of the afternoon.

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) passes under pressure from Los Angeles Chargers defensive end Damion Square (71) during the first half of an NFL divisional playoff football game, Sunday, Jan. 13, 2019, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) passes below stress from Los Angeles Chargers defensive end Damion Square (71) for the duration of the to start with half of an NFL divisional playoff football sport, Sunday, Jan. 13, 2019, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Image/Charles Krupa)

Earlier Sunday, Tom Brady dissected the Los Angeles Chargers for 343 yards and a landing while rookie Sony Michel rushed for 129 yards and 3 touchdowns in his to start with playoff sport as New England cruised to a 41-28 victory at Gilette Stadium Sunday to set up a showdown with the Kansas Metropolis Chiefs up coming weekend.

With the gain, the Patriots prolonged their own NFL file by achieving their eighth consecutive conference championship sport and 13th in the Brady-Monthly bill Belichick era. They are 4-3 in the earlier 7 matchups in excess of that amazing run but missing both video games that were performed on the road — to Peyton Manning’s Denver Broncos at Mile Superior Stadium.

The title sport will be a rematch of just one of the best video games of the normal season, a 43-40 New England victory in excess of the Chiefs in Foxboro. But up coming week’s sport will be in Kansas Metropolis and the Chiefs will have star linebacker Justin Houston, who skipped the normal season matchup with an injury.

In closing out a best 9- season at dwelling, the Patriots offense was at its substantial-powered best in the to start with half. New England scored on its to start with four possessions en route to a 35-7 halftime direct, rendering the second 30 minutes prolonged rubbish time. New England went 5 for 5 in the pink zone, 5 of 6 on 3rd down and dedicated only just one penalty.

The Patriots offense failed to go 3-and-out for the to start with time until its fifth offensive contact of the working day when they punted with 3:32 still left in the second quarter. But Ryan Allen’s 48-property punt was fumbled by Desmond King , sending the ball rolling towards the sideline. The referees dominated the ball went out of bounds right before New England’s Albert McClellan appeared to recuperate it. But the engage in was reversed immediately after a challenge by Belichick. The turnover proved pricey, with the Patriots scoring just four plays later on when Michel crossed the objective line from 5 yards for his 3rd landing of the half to make it 35-7.

James White caught 15 passes from Brady for 97 receiving yards, tying Darren Sproles’ file for most receptions in a playoff sport. Julian Edelman also experienced a significant sport, catching 9 passes for 151 yards.

Michel, the to start with Patriots rookie to have a playoff dashing landing due to the fact Robert Edwards in 1998, carried 16 occasions for 105 yards in the to start with half. He set the tone early, scoring from 1 property on the opening possession of the sport. It capped a 14-engage in, 83-property push in which he rushed five occasions for 15 yards and experienced a 9-property reception.

The Patriots added scoring drives of 67, 58 and 87 yards to bury Los Angeles in the to start with 24 minutes of the sport. Michel climaxed the 67-property push with a 14-property scoring sprint, while Brady found Phillip Dorsett from 15 yards out to wrap up the 58-property march and Rex Burkhead carried in excess of from 6 yards out to conclude the 87-property push.

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By distinction, the Chargers offense went as cold as the kickoff temperature after Philip Rivers located Keenan Allen for a 43-property landing on the visitors’ opening possession. Los Angeles did not cross midfield until late in the 3rd quarter when Rivers engineered the to start with of 3 second-half landing drives that helped to make the score much more respectable.

Rivers finished his day 25 of 51 for 331 yards, 3 touchdowns and an interception. He is -5 in video games performed at Gillette Stadium, which include -3 in the postseason. He is 1-8 in opposition to New England all-time. The Chargers missing for just the second time on the road and to start with time exterior Los Angeles. They have not achieved the AFC Championship Video game due to the fact 2007.

The Involved Press contributed to this report.

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