‘Got away with that one’: 49ers burned by missed challenge on Eagles’ big reception

It was a tale of two challenges: the Eagles got away with one (or lack thereof), and the 49ers got boomed by one.

On the first drive of the NFC Championship game, Philadelphia’s Jalen Hurts was flushed from the pocket on 4th-and-3 and whipped a 25-yard pass to DeVonta Smith along the sideline, who extended to make an incredible one-handed snag.

Or did he? The Eagles rushed to the line to get the next play in, and Kyle Shanahan and Co. didn’t challenge the play. But upon closer review, Smith clearly lost control of the ball as he careened into the turf. It should have been called an incompletion.

Two plays later, the Eagles were in the endzone.

On the ensuing San Francisco drive, quarterback Brock Purdy dropped back to pass and got nailed by the Eagles’ rush, sending the ball caroming into the Philadelphia secondary.

They couldn’t come up with what the refs called an incomplete ball before it landed for the interception, but Linval Joseph smartly jumped on it anyways, because a Philadelphia challenge overturned the ruling on the field: it was a fumble, and it was Philadelphia’s ball again.

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