Falcons beat Rams, will play Eagles next Saturday

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Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan passes against the Los Angeles Rams during the team’s wild card win.

The Atlanta Falcons upset the Los Angeles Rams, 26-13, in the NFC Wild-Card round on Saturday and will play the Eagles in the Divisional Round next Saturday at Lincoln Financial Field. The game is scheduled for 4:35 p.m.

The Falcons earned a playoff bid during the final week of the season when a win over Carolina allowed them to finish 10-6 and offered a chance to defend their NFC title. They are not playing as well as they were last season when they went to the Super Bowl, but they are still dangerous, especially if the offense catches fire.

Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones (11) picks up a first down past the Los Angeles Rams’ Lamarcus Joyner during the team’s win on Saturday.

Quarterback Matt Ryan’s production has dropped after winning the MVP last year, although the Penn Charter School product can challenge the Eagles secondary with top wide receiver Julio Jones. Jim Schwartz’s defense played well against Ryan and the Falcons last season when it limited Atlanta to a season-low 15 points. The teams have not played this season, but look for that game to come up often in interviews this week.

The Falcons have a swarming defense that will try to bother Eagles quarterback Nick Foles. Head coach Dan Quinn likes to build his defenses with speed, although it hasn’t translated into takeaways this season. The Falcons had only eight interceptions in the regular season. Saturday’s win in Los Angeles gave the Falcons a 6-3 road record this season, so they know how to travel well.

But the Philadelphia crowd will be energized, especially knowing the top-seeded Eagles get to play the NFC’s sixth seed.