Woods caused some more noise - he's been doing that a lot in recent months before the largest galleries at every course - and got within one shot of the lead when he birdied the par-5 ninth to go out in 31.
Rose, who reeled off nine consecutive pars to finish round three on Saturday after an outward nine of 29, also finished runner-up in this event previous year albeit at another venue.
Tiger Woods, who celebrated his return to the United States Ryder Cup team by earning a share of the lead after the first round, was joint sixth alongside compatriot Webb Simpson on 17-under, while England's Tommy Fleetwood shared eighth place with Tony Finau, Rickie Fowler and Open champion Francesco Molinari.
Five-time BMW championship victor Tiger Woods mounted another vintage charge, but a late back-nine stumble has been the story of his comeback season from spinal fusion surgery. If he doesn't qualify, Spieth would violate a recent policy requiring PGA Tour members to play a tournament they haven't been to in the last four years. Only six players shot worse in the second round.
However, Rose's approach stalled in the wind and landed short of the green, and his mis-judged pitch stopped 15 feet from the hole before his par-putt caught a big piece of the hole but stayed out.
His performance today keeps him inside the top 30 of the FedExCup standings. It's a great win to come back after six years.
Rory McIlroy finished fifth at 18-under after firing a final-round 2-under 68.
John Terry opens up on Man United under Jose Mourinho
Zinedine Zidane has confirmed he will be back "coaching again soon" as he continues to be linked with Manchester United . January transfers are always hard to negotiate given clubs often have little or no time to sign a replacement.
Bryson DeChambeau, who won the first two FedEx events at the Northern Trust, is assured of leaving the BMW Championship atop the standings heading to Atlanta.
For Spieth, it's more than just missing the Tour Championship for the first time.
"It's a game changer for a player like me that's not in the top 50 to get in the Tour Championship", he said.
That means he will have played only 24 tournaments this year, which includes the Ryder Cup.
No one needs to play Monday as much as Spieth.
"In order to win out here you've got to be consistent and on a golf course like this, even par is not going to do a whole lot, " Woods said.
"I need to start really lifting and getting after it", Woods said of his offseason.