With one second left the Eagles need 16 yards and a touchdown to walkoff with their sixth win against the Cardinals Sunday. But Jordan Matthews’ grasp came with both feet out of bounds and the Eagles fell 24-20 in a thriller.
It was a game the Eagles could have easily won, had they held onto the ball, had they executed in the red zone, or if the offense could take care of the big play.
Jeremy Maclin and Nick Foles each had monster performances, with Maclin catching 12 passes for 187 yards and Foles completing 36-for-62 for 411 yards.
“It was two really good teams going at it,” Carson Palmer, who had 329 yards himself, said.”Two really good defenses and two really potentially explosive offenses.”
The Birds had a golden opportunity to put seven points on the board a possession earlier.With the Eagles and Cardinals tied at 17-apiece and the two-minute warning approaching, the Eagles had a third down at the goalline with one yard to go. Chip Kelly had Nick Folescome out in the shotgun, and LeSean McCoy’s attempt to get back to the line of scrimmage, and into the end zone was thwarted.
A chip shot field goal putting the Birds ahead 20-17, it was up to the defense to preserve the victory.
But the defense gave up a big play. A huge play in fact, with John Brown wide open at the other end of a 75-yard touchdown strike put the Cardinals ahead 24-20 with just over one minute remaining.
Nick Foles was on fire during the Eagles’ first scoring drive. Completing six of eight passes, he found his favorite target Jeremy Maclin for a 21-yard scoring strike to give the Birds an early advantage.
Andre Ellington evened the score on the Cardinals next drive as the team took advantage of the Eagles’ inability to get off the field. After committing five penalties on Arizona’s first drive but still forcing a punt, the Eagles let Larry Fitzgerald and Carson Palmer move the chains repeatedly setting up Ellington’s second touchdown of the year just over a minute into the second quarter.
Fitzgerald would wind up with 160 yards receiving.
The Birds nearly scored another touchdown but Josh Huff, scrambling for the end zone after catching a screen pass, coughed up the ball at the Cardinals two-yard line–where it was recovered by Arizona.
After hanging on to cause a Cardinals punt, Nick Foles went deep for Huff in the end zoneon the Eagles’ next drive and was picked off by Antonio Cromartie.
Out of the locker room, the Cardinals exploded for a 80-yard strike, Palmer to Fitzgerald to give the Eagles a 14-7 lead. It was his 11th career touchdown against the Birds in seven games.
The best the Eagles could do to respond in their first possession of the second half was a 54-yard Cody Parkey field goal.
Jeremy Maclingave the Birds the lead again thanks to an incredible bomb from Foles that found Maclinin the end zone on a 54-yard strike.Nate Allen kept the Eagles streak of consecutive games with a turnover (now at 19) by recovering a fumble late in the third quarter.
In the fourth quarter, the Eagles’ lead was threatened when Cromartie grabbed his second interception of the game. This led to a Cardinals field goal to knot the game at 17-all.