Sunday Night Football: Washington clinches NFC East with 20-14 win over Eagles

USA Today Sports

Washington will represent the NFC East in the postseason.

The Football Team defeated the Eagles 20-14 in the final game of the 2020 regular season, clinching their playoff berth and eliminating the Giants.

Washington got out to a 10-0 lead, but Jalen Hurts scored two straight rushing touchdowns to gain a 14-10 advantage.

Then Logan Thomas‘ 13-yard touchdown reception put the Football Team back on top 17-14 before halftime. And Dustin Hopkins nailed a 42-yard field goal in the fourth quarter to close the scoring.

But this game might be better remembered for head coach Doug Pederson’s quarterback decisions. Benched quarterback Carson Wentz was a healthy scratch, inactive for Sunday’s contest so Philadelphia could activate Nate Sudfeld as Hurts’ backup.

Hurts completed 7-of-20 passes for 72 yards, and had 34 yards on the ground.

But after Hurts threw an incomplete pass on fourth-and-goal from the four late in the third quarter, Pederson inserted Sudfeld into the contest. He promptly threw an interception and then fumbled a shotgun snap for two giveaways in six plays.

Sudfeld finished 5-of-12 passing for 31 yards with an interception.

One of the season’s best stories, quarterback Alex Smith was 22-of-32 passing for 162 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions. He’ll now get a chance to start a playoff game next week.

As the NFC’s No. 4 seed, Washington will host No. 5 Tampa Bay next week in the wild-card round.

At 7-9, the Football Team is the first squad with a losing record to make the postseason since Carolina won the NFC South at 7-8-1 in 2014. That team was also coached by Ron Rivera.

55 responses to “Sunday Night Football: Washington clinches NFC East with 20-14 win over Eagles

  1. Hey Cam Newton, you see the 40 year old, broken leg, ankled sprained Alex Smith dive in a fumble. That the difference between a player like him and a player like you. He’s all about the team, you’re only about you.

  2. The most blatantly fixed game I’ve ever seen. They were playing well and opted out of tying the game and then pulled their QB to ensure a loss. Did Vegas know ahead of time?

  3. Doug Pederson is a scrub and nothing good can come from what he did tonight. It’s a disgrace. Anyhoooo, GO HAWKS!!!

  4. What a disgrace and a waste of time watching that. Lost all respect for Pederson for pulling Hurts in that situation.

  5. The Eagles are an embarrassment to true competitors everywhere. My 11-year-old daughter said if her soccer coach ever gave up like that, she’d ask for a trade lol

  6. Nate Sudfeld made 2 million dollars this year. Let that sink in. Have a good day at work tomorrow.

  7. WFT was trying so hard to hand over the game to the Eagles but they tried harder to give it back. Never seen two teams so unwilling to win

  8. Embarrassing what Doug Pederson did in the fourth quarter; pulling Hurts in a competitive game. Disrespectful to the game, to the New York Giants, and to his team by robbing them of a chance to finish the season with a big win. As Herm Edward’s said, ‘You play to win the game.’

    I could care less who won the game personally, but classless for a side to not play to win.

  9. Don’t just end the division winners automatically qualifying, do away with the conferences altogether. Does anybody want to see this team in the playoffs over a 10-6 AFC team?

  10. And that folks is how you tank a game… In a close game you decide to evaluate your 3rd string QB in the 4th Qtr.

    Alex Smith looked totally done. Daniel Jones looks more mobile than him today. Against a competent team, they will get steamrolled next week.

    I still think JJAW is flipping burgers next year despite him having 2 catches in tonight’s game.

    It was also nice to see Justin Jefferson break the rookie receiving record today. One of these days the Eagles brass will realize they aren’t smarter than everyone else when it comes to drafting WRs. It would actually be funny if they drafted another receiver at 6th overall next year but it’s not the consensus #1 WR because that would be to obvious for the Eagles.

    Seriously though, the pick needs to be Offensive line no matter who is there and trade freaking Ertz, like you should’ve done a month ago.

  11. I would be embarrassed to be an Eagles fan right now. Dougie P threw that game on purpose to move up a few spots in the draft.

  12. Pederson is a clown, but as a Giants fan I wasnt expecting any favors to begin with. Congrats to Washington.

  13. Once they took away Hurts’ running lanes he turned back into a pumpkin. When the key to stopping a QB is to make him throw, you might want to pump the breaks on the Franchise QB talk.

  14. I wish NFL was like European football, all players get to choose where they want to play, thus teams have no incentive to tank.

    Congrads Riverboat, Hurts is a baller, but wasnt fun game to watch in the end.

  15. Perfect ending for the NFC East in 2020. The division is won by a team with no name and they “win” the division by having the favorites play the clinching game like its preseason. Way to post Philly…

  16. As a life-long Eagles fan, that was an embarrassing and obvious tank.
    Yes, the higher draft pick is nice, but it is unfair to every player out there playing their hearts out.
    That is all.

  17. It certainly looks like Peterson intentionally threw the game….can the NFL afford to have this kind of coach in the game….He owes both the Eagles fans and the Giant fans an apology…now lets see if Roseman does the right thing.

  18. I wonder who the Eagles liked enough at 6th vs 9th in the upcoming draft?
    I loved Seeing the Eagles win their way to a Championship.
    But then things became such a broken record. Every team has injuries sure, but the eagles just somehow, had a rediculous amount of injuries every year..Bla bla bla, the eagles are the victim…Same story for the last 4 years.
    i’m happy for washington and definitely wasn’t rooting against them. Wouldn’t have minded seeing the Giants vs tampa either though. This could potentially be a sneaky good game with washington and Tampa.

  19. After a season of many embarrassments, this is the most embarrassed I’ve been of my Eagles ever. Ped.erson should be fired for this

  20. Lurie should fire Pederson before he leaves the building tonight for that decision. How do you throw in the towel like that down just 3 points with a full quarter to go? As former Eagle Herm Edwards eloquently said, “You play to win the game.” Apparently Dougie missed that video clip.

  21. I’m glad for Alex Smith and Ron Rivera. I had hoped that the Eagles would make a change at GM going into the offseason. But this changes it for me, they should clean house. If they keep Pederson, how do you think those players feel that it didn’t seem like they were trying to win in the 4Q? I wouldn’t be surprised if they have a terrible year next year if they do.

  22. I’m sorry, but Jalen Hurts is terrible. He was 7 of 20 for 72 yards. He had a QB Rating of 25.4. You know you are bad when you Pederson replaces him with a guy who’s bloom is off the rose. Eagles, you better fix that OL. The pass blocking from the tackles was terrible.

  23. He threw the game, plain and simple. Is losing a couple spots in the draft that important that youre willing to lose the respect of your players? I dont see how he ever recovers as a head coach.

  24. People acting like Hurtz was gonna win them the game is hilarious. Dude had 75 passing yards in 3 quarters.

  25. The Giants suck but they would never lay down like this. Ever. No wonder Wentz wants out. Pathetic

  26. The Eagles made an organizational decision to get the #6 pick instead of the #9 pick. A pathetic show of character.

  27. Washington fan here. For all those who say it’s classless to tank, get over yourselves. The goal for any organization is to do what’s best for the organization. Last year the Giants won a meaningless game against Washington and it cost them Chase Young. That’s a ten year mistake. But until the NFL changes the rules for draft order, an organization SHOULD tank. Ask Jets fans if they’re happy they won meaningless games this year. If you’re a Giants fan and don’t like it, my suggestion is to win more games. But you have no leg to stand on whining about another team doing what is best for it’s future.

  28. Thank you Doug Peterson for pulling that AWFUL Jalen Hurts, and THANK YOU for losing, and knocking those Giants OUT of the playoffs. Nothing better than having the Giants miss the playoffs!!

  29. Boy, could you see the outcry if it were the Cowboys who won earlier and were depending on the Eagles. Still a disgrace on Philly’s part.

  30. yeah but hurts could still hurt the football team with his legs sudfeld is a statue and like collingworth said imagine if dallas had won, jerry jones might have filed a protest, as again the texans had nothing to play for, and there draft pick the 3rd pick the dolphins have, and they played all there starters a full 60 minutes and what pederson did was a joke

  31. If any of your teams was in the same place as the Eagles I guaranty you they would have done the same thing. I bet this was an organizational decision but the head coach is taking the heat for it.When the Jets, Jaguars , Texans , lions and whoever else did what the Eagles did tonight nobody said anything bad about them. It’s just a bunch of mad Giants fans who are saying all the bad things about Pederson. I’m glad Washington won the division because Ron Rivera is a class act and Alex Smith is too.

  32. They showed It when they hosted the vikes for the playoffs and they show it again now, bad for sporty and totally classless organization. If i was Wentz, I’d be so happy to get outta at that environment!

  33. As bad as Hurtz was playing, he was still a risk to run, so WFT had to defend against both possibilities (scramble and pass) on each play. When Sudfeld came in, the risk of the run was off the table and all we had to worry about was the pass. Had to be intentional by the Eagles.

  34. It’s not just one pick. It’s a higher pick in every round in which they have their own pick. Smart business by Philly.

  35. Pederson got the memo at halftime from the NFL head office that there was no way they would allow a 6 win team to host a playoff game- so tank or ELSE…….

  36. Good job Doug Peterson. You did what was in the best interest for your football team. I don’t know if there is a difference in the talent level, but I understand. I wanted the Redskins to lose, but now.. we pick after way better teams with better records. Winning this division wasn’t worth the playoff spot, if you don’t have a real chance at winning the Super Bowl. but “any given Sunday” I guess..*sigh … sometimes you have to take a step back to go further.

  37. As a life long Eagles fan, I’m thoroughly embarrassed. If this was truly Doug’s decision, then how do these players have any respect for him moving forward? If it what an organizational decision, then what does it say about your organization? Is it really worth hurting the integrity of the game and disgracing your organization just to move up 3 picks in the draft? A draft where Howie Roseman will still have final say? And a word to Giants fans…once you get over the sting of missing out on the playoffs, you’ll be thanking the Eagles! Their tanking helped your team a lot more than theirs. They gained 3 spots in the draft and shamed themselves in the process. You moved up 8 spots AND maintained your dignity by going out and trying to win. It Hurts to say (pun intended), but your future looks much brighter than ours!

  38. Lurie should fire Pederson before he leaves the building tonight for that decision. How do you throw in the towel like that down just 3 points with a full quarter to go? As former Eagle Herm Edwards eloquently said, “You play to win the game.” Apparently Dougie missed that video clip.

    Unless it was Lurie’s decision, which seems more plausible than it being Pederson’s decision.

  39. Lots of claims that the game was fixed, but I saw the refs trying to fix the game for Philly early on.

  40. I missed most of the game, but what I saw from about mid 3rd quarter to the end was absolute garbage football.

  41. Those bashing Doug are clueless.. He’s not pulling the strings. He said that was the plan all week.

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