EditorsNote: Adds note of Hester tipping FG attempt (fifth graf)
Nick Foles found Golden Tate for a 2-yard touchdown pass on fourth-and-goal with 56 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter, and the Philadelphia Eagles held on for a 16-15 win over the host Chicago Bears on Sunday in the NFC divisional playoffs.
The Eagles were stuffed on three plays from the 2-yard line before Tate hauled in the pass just beyond the goal line with the season at stake. The defending Super Bowl champions will travel south to face the top-seeded New Orleans Saints next week.
Bears kicker Cody Parkey missed a 43-yard field goal in the final seconds for Chicago as teammates watched in disbelief from the sideline. Parkey’s kick hit the left upright and then hit the crossbar before bouncing back into the end zone. It was the sixth time he hit the upright this season.
“I feel terrible,” Parkey told reporters afterward. “There’s really no answer to it. I thought I hit a good ball.”
Slow-motion replays appeared to show Eagles defensive tackle Treyvon Hester getting a finger on the kick with his left hand, and teammates confirmed afterward that Hester tipped it.
Foles completed 25 of 40 passes for 266 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. Tate and Dallas Goedert each had a touchdown catch.
Mitchell Trubisky completed 26 of 43 passes for 303 yards and one touchdown in his playoff debut. His top target was Allen Robinson, who finished with 10 catches for 143 yards and a touchdown.
Robinson hauled in a 22-yard score along the right sideline to give Chicago a 15-10 lead with 9:04 remaining in the fourth quarter. Taylor Gabriel was stuffed in front of the goal line on a rushing attempt for a failed two-point conversion.
The Eagles grabbed a 10-6 lead with 5:20 to go in the third quarter. Foles looked to his left and connected with Goedert on a slant route toward the end zone for a 10-yard score. The completion — which came with only 10 Bears on the field — capped a seven-play, 83-yard scoring drive.
Chicago pulled within 10-9 with 14:13 remaining in the fourth quarter. Parkey made a 34-yard field goal for his third strike of the game.
Philadelphia opened the scoring on the first possession of the game with a 43-yard field goal from Jake Elliott.
The Bears’ offense had back-to-back punts before Parkey evened the score at 3 with a 36-yard field goal with 9:38 to play in the second quarter. An interception by Bears linebacker Roquan Smith on the previous drive helped to set up the score.
Chicago took a 6-3 lead as time expired in the half on Parkey’s 29-yarder.
The Eagles will visit New Orleans next Sunday, while the Dallas Cowboys visit the second-seeded Los Angeles Rams on Saturday.
—Field Level Media