By ZACH BERMAN
Tribune News Service
LANDOVER, Md. -- The clock struck midnight on Mark Sanchez with 91 seconds remaining in the Eagles' 27-24 loss to the Washington Redskins on Saturday, and it might have also ended the Eagles' season.
Sanchez threw an interception on a potential game-winning drive, allowing the Redskins to drive for a field goal to severely hurt the Eagles' hopes of a postseason berth.
With the game tied at 24, Sanchez threw an interception at the Redskins' 42-yard line. Washington's Pierre Garcon responded with a 23-yard catch that was helped by 15 yards on a roughing-the-passer penalty.
Washington moved inside the 10, and with 10 seconds left Kai Forbath kicked a 26-yard field goal to win it.
To make the playoffs, the Eagles (9-6) now need to win next week against the New York Giants, and for the Dallas Cowboys to lose their final two games.
The Eagles have no one to blame but themselves, because they committed two turnovers and were penalized 13 times for 102 yards. They were also hurt by former Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson, who burned the Eagles for 126 yards in his second game against his former team.
Sanchez finished 37-of-49 for 374 yards, two touchdowns, one interception, and one fumble. Zach Ertz set a franchise record with 15 catches, while Riley Cooper added two touchdowns. LeSean McCoy rushed 22 times for 88 yards and one touchdown.
The Eagles turned the ball over on their first drive when Ryan Kerrigan stripped Sanchez on a third-down pass attempt.
Washington took possession at the Eagles' 47-yard line and drove to the 7-yard line before they needed to settle for a field. A third-down penalty by Cary Williams extended the drive, but it did not end up hurting the Eagles.
The Eagles responded by going 79 yards on 10 plays, six of which went to McCoy. He finished the drive with an 11-yard touchdown run to give the Eagles a 7-3 lead.
During the week, Washington coach Jay Gruden said the Redskins couldn't rely on long drives. They needed quick strikes. It helps to have Jackson for that. With Bradley Fletcher on Jackson in one-on-one coverage, Griffin found Jackson for a 51-yard catch deep down the right sideline. Morris rushed for a 28-yard score on the next play to give Washington a 10-7 lead.
Unlike the Redskins, the Eagles were fine with long drives.
They scored the only points in the second quarter when they went 93 yards on 15 plays in a drive that lasted more than seven minutes. The Eagles had two unlikely third-down conversions on that drive: a 26-yard pass to Jordan Matthews on third-and-25, and an 18-yard completion to Darren Sproles on third-and-16. Cooper caught a 3-yard touchdown to give the Eagles a 14-10 lead.
That was the halftime score, because Kelly bypassed a long field goal at the end of the half to punt the ball instead. Maybe Kelly knew something about his kicker on Saturday, because Cody Parkey missed two third-quarter field goals.
The first miss came after the Eagles special teams forced a fumble on the opening kickoff and gained possession on Washington's 16-yard line. The Eagles did not net a yard on three plays, and Parkey's 34-yard field goal sailed wide right.