It was an exclamation point to end an interesting season for both Philadelphia and New York.
As each team ponders its future, both can hang their hats on a solid output in Week 17 with promise for explosive offenses in 2015.
Here are some interesting facts from the season’s last game, an Eagles 34-26 win. First, the Birds:
- Mark Sanchez is the third NFL quarterback in the last six years with 11 or more interceptions in nine or fewer games. (John Skelton in 2011 and Matt Cassel in 2012).
- Trey Burton’s touchdown was the 11th return touchdown for the Eagles, adding to their team record, and two shy of an NFL record. They finished the season with the third-most in NFL history.
- James Casey’s blocked punt following the Giants’ opening possession of the second half gave the Eagles a 24-17 lead after the rookie Burton returned it for the score.It was the third time this season that Philadelphia returned a blocked punt for a score.
- Team owner JeffLurie said that Howie Roseman will “absolutely ” continue as the team’s general manger.
- Lurie on roster upgrades:”We know exactly what we have to upgrade.”He added that theEagles must fix turnovers, red-zone offense, and make “big plays on D … some Achilles heels that, in the end, were not solvable. That’s what derailed us. It wasn’t the math.”
- The Eagles will have the 20th pick in next year’s draft.
- Lurie on the quarterback situation going forward, particularly with Foles: “Under Chip and the staff, he’s 14-4, and that’s pretty damn good. He’s a hard worker, great guy. We’ll just have to see … There’s a scarcity of quarterbacks. We always got to try to win big and focus on that position at all times.”
- More Lurie on not making the playoffs: “It’s gut-wrenching. This is a great, great group of guys [and] the most motivated team I can remember.”
- The Eagles, Seahawks, and Cardinals are the only NFC teams to win 10 games in each of the last two seasons.
- McCoy was very open and honest when discussing his contract situation. He’s supposed to make $9.75 million in base salary for the 2015-16 season, but sounded uncertain if he’d be back under that deal:”I’m sure we can work something out and hopefully everything does work out. At the end of the day, man, it is a business.”
- The loquacious running backhearkenedto the way friend and former teammate DeSean Jackson was treated last season:”I’d be lying if I said it [being moved] never flashed in my mind because it happened to [DeSean] off his best year. So you never know.”
Big Blue notes:
- The blocked punt was the first of Giants’ punter Steve Weatherford’s career, after the previous 672 punts went unharmed.
- Odell Beckham recorded his eighth-straight 90-yard receiving game, tying Michael Irvin’s NFL rookie record.
- Beckham also surpassed Billy Howton (1,231 withe the Green Bay Packers in 1952) for the most receiving yards in the first 12 games of an NFL career.
- Beckham’s future is bright and secure, but as for his coach, he neither knows or cares to talk about his own, as Coughlinsaid he’s not going to talk about anything that has to do with his future, or his staff’s. He did add, however, that he intends on “going to go about my business until I’m told otherwise.”
- As for Coughlin’s staff, the coach acknowledged that he’d like to see his staff return intact, but won’t go any further: “Yes, I’d like them too, but I’m not going to say anything more about that today.”
- Manning echoed Coughlin’s sentiments:”I would hope not,” Manning said when asked if thinks any coaches will be fired. “I think we have a great coaching staff.”
- Defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul wasn’t in the mood to talk about his pending free agency, but did add this nugget when asked about possibly giving the Giants a hometown discount in contract negotiations:”Do you give discounts? Do you get discounts when you go to Macy’s?” Pierre-Paul did add that there’s a high probability that he’ll don the blue and white next season: “I’m pretty sure it’s probably not [his final game as a Giant].” The Pro Bowler can be hit with a franchise tag.
- Pierre-Paul on wanting Coughlin to return:”Of course. I look at coach Coughlin as a dad.”
- Team owner John Mara declined public comment on anything after the game, saying he’ll speak to the media later this week.
- Coughlin has gone 96-80 during his tenure in New York, including two Super Bowl wins for the franchise.