Eagles QB Wentz knocked out of Rams game with knee injury

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LOS ANGELES — Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz suffered a knee injury late in the third quarter Sunday and was knocked out of a showdown against Jared Goff and the Los Angeles Rams.

Wentz was hit hard as he scrambled into the end zone on a play that was called back because of holding on tackle Lane Johnson. He stayed in the game, and threw a 3-yard touchdown pass to Alshon Jeffery four plays later to give the Eagles a short-lived 31-28 lead.

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It was Wentz’s 33rd TD pass, setting the team’s single-season record. Wentz was the second pick overall in the 2016 draft. Goff was No. 1 overall.

Nick Foles replaced Wentz the next drive.

For more NFL coverage: http://pro32.ap.org and https://twitter.com/AP-NFL

Eagles lose Wentz to injury, beat Rams 43-35 to win NFC East

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LOS ANGELES — Carson Wentz threw for 291 yards and four touchdowns before leaving with a knee injury and Jake Elliott kicked the go-ahead 33-yard field goal with 3:45 left for the Philadelphia Eagles, who beat the Los Angeles Rams 43-35 in a thriller Sunday to clinch the NFC East title.

Two sources familiar with the injury tell The Associated Press that doctors believe Wentz has torn his left anterior cruciate ligament and will miss the rest of the season and playoffs.

Wentz needs an MRI to confirm the severity of the injury. Both people spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to release the information.

Wentz was hit hard as he dived into the end zone on a play that was called back because of holding. He stayed in the game and threw a 3-yard touchdown pass to Alshon Jeffery four plays later to give the Eagles a 31-28 lead.

Nick Foles replaced Wentz on the next drive for Philadelphia (11-2).

Road to Super Bowl LII: Stream, start time, highlights and more

The NFC West-leading Rams (9-4) then went up 35-31 on Todd Gurley‘s second short TD run.

Elliott kicked a 41-yard field goal to pull the Eagles to 35-34. His go-ahead field goal was set up when Chris Long, a second-round draft pick of the then-St. Louis Rams in 2008, had a strip-sack of Jared Goff, with Rodney McLeod recovering.

Elliott kicked a 54-yarder, but the Eagles got an automatic first down on a personal foul on Aaron Donald. Elliott kicked the winner four plays later.

The game ended on a crazy play, when Philadelphia’s Brandon Graham grabbed a lateral by Tavon Austin out of the air on the game’s last play and scored what was ruled a 16-yard fumble return.

The Eagles clinched their first division title since 2013.

WENTZ AND GOFF

This was the eighth time in the Super Bowl era that quarterbacks taken No. 1 and No. 2 overall in the same draft squared off. Goff was the first pick overall in 2016, followed by Wentz.

Goff threw for 199 yards and two touchdowns.

Wentz bounced back from throwing an interception on the game’s third play to throw touchdown passes on the Eagles’ next three possessions for a 21-7 lead. He threw a 5-yarder to tight end Brent Celek and a beautifully threaded 20-yarder to Trey Burton in the first quarter, and then another nicely thrown scoring pass to Burton in the second quarter, this one for 11 yards.

HISTORY

This game marked just the eighth time in the Super Bowl era that quarterbacks taken No. 1 and No. 2 overall in the same draft squared off. Goff was the first pick overall in 2016, followed by Wentz. The No. 1 pick is now 5-3 in such matchups.

MOMENTUM SWING

The Rams scored twice in a span of less than two minutes early in the third quarter to take a 28-24 lead. The big momentum swing came when Blake Countess returned a blocked punt 16 yards for a touchdown. The punt was blocked by Michael Thomas, and the ball bounced right to Countess in stride.

Earlier, Goff capped the opening drive of the second half with a 1-yard touchdown pass to Sammy Watkins.

INJURIES

Eagles: Aside from Wentz, starting tight end Zach Ertz missed the game with a concussion.

Rams: CB Kayvon Webster, who intercepted Wentz on the game’s third play, was taken off the field on a cart with an ankle injury late in the first quarter and didn’t return. Tackle Andrew Whitworth also suffered an ankle injury.

UP NEXT

Eagles: At New York Giants on Sunday.

Rams: At Seattle on Sunday.

For more NFL coverage: http://www.pro32.ap.org and http://www.twitter.com/AP-NFL

Eagles become Super Bowl LII betting favorites

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Although the toughest stage of their season is ahead of them, the Philadelphia Eagles seem to be worth their price tag on the Super Bowl LII champion odds.

The Eagles, led by young quarterback Carson Wentz, are now the +400 favorite on the odds to win Super Bowl 52 at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com. The defending champion New England Patriots (+450) are the second favorite, with the Pittsburgh Steelers (+750), Kansas City Chiefs (+1100), Seattle Seahawks (+1200), Los Angeles Rams (+1400) and New Orleans Saints (+1400) also moving up the board.

Philadelphia enters Week 10 of the season with a NFL-best 8-1 record, a prolific offense led by Wentz and a defense that leads the NFL in sacks. Their remaining slate still includes two games against the Dallas Cowboys (+1600) as well as potential playoff previews against the Rams and Seahawks, but Philadelphia is in the driver’s seat to have home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs.

That makes them a more sure commodity than most other teams, especially since having a strong rushing attack and a strong run defense could work in their favor come playoff time.

The Patriots are having their issues on defense, but the Bill Belichick-Tom Brady mystique makes it hard to write them off this early in the game. At the same time, New England is at the midpoint of the season ranked dead last in the NFL in yards allowed and passing yards allowed. It’s hard to win with substandard defense.

The value among AFC aspirants, though, probably rests more with the Steelers. Two-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is no longer at his peak, but is surrounded by better skill-position talent than Brady and Pittsburgh also boasts a top-5 defense with a reliable pass rush.

Similarly, while they have cooled off, Kansas City is worth monitoring if one believes both the Patriots and Steelers are too flawed to win the conference.

In the NFC, the Seahawks are one team that can probably be singled out as a sucker bet due to the weakness of their offensive line and rushing game. If one is inclined to cast their lot with an outside shot from the NFC, it might be better to take a long look at either the Rams or Minnesota Vikings (+1600) since both are younger teams.

The Rams are exhibiting a high-octane offense built around QB Jared Goff and RB Todd Gurley, and have pieces in place to be competitive for years. Their future might be now.  Likewise, the Vikings have had a strong enough defense to weather an ever-changing quarterback situation (Case Keenum? Teddy Bridgewater?). Both teams also have clear paths to winning their divisions.

Super Bowl LII will take place Feb. 4, 2018 at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minn.

For more info, picks and a breakdown of this week’s top sports betting news check out the new OddsShark podcast with Jon Campbell and Andrew Avery. Subscribe on iTunes, or check it out at OddsShark.libsyn.com.