The Eagles tore off the shackles of their embarrassing debacle in Green Bay with a 43-24 win over Tennessee at home Sunday, an impressive offensive performance that saw LeSean McCoy resemble his league-leading self from a year ago.The running back ran the ball 21 times for 130 yards and a touchdown.
The Birds made their commitment to the run clear throughout the game (though they still passed more, 43 passes to 38 runs), relying on McCoy and also getting contributions from Darren Sproles and Chris Polk intermittently throughout the win, which assures the team at least a piece of first place in the NFC East.
The score would have been even more lop-sided had Philly (and Mark Sanchez) been able to keep from turning over the ball. The Eagles are one of the worst teams in all of football in giveaways and Sanchez’ two interceptions were only redeemed by two recovered fumbles and a special teams unit that got the fireworks hailing just seconds into the game.
Josh Huff made history on the opening kickoff, taking Ryan Succop’sopening boot 107 yards, an Eagles record, to the house to but the Birds up 7-0 immediately. The scamper was the 10th Eagles non-offensive touchdown on the year.
Not long after, Darren Sprolesunfurled a four-yard run to get the Eagles in the end zone for a second time in the first, opening up a 14-0 lead early in the game.
The Birds’ defense was back to normal in the victory, harassing the Tennessee offensive line to sack Zach Mettenbergerfive times. Connor Barwin had two sacks to up his season total to 12.5. He also forced a fumble. Though the D at times allowed for some big offensive gains from players like Delanie Walker and Kendall Wright, the Birds stepped up when they had to.Just prior to the to minute warning, Brandon Boykinsadded an interception, his first of the year.
A Sanchez interception, thrown to Brandon Ghee led to the Titans getting on the board in the second quarter thanks to a tipped Mettenberger pass finding the hands of Justin Hunter, cutting the Birds’ lead to 17-7.
McCoy looked like the 2013 version of himself on the Eagles next drive, as he broke open an ankle-breaking 53-yard run to lead to Cody Parkey’s second field goal of the game and a 20-7 Birds advantage.
Tennesse fought back with their own big play, a story the Eagles know all too well, when Walker broke loose for a 68-yard sideline catch to put the Titans on the doorstep. Thanks in part to a Vinny Curry facemask (on a third down sack), Shonn Greene burst through the Eagles defense for a touchdown to make the score 20-14.
The Eagles put their offense in gear to take control of the game once again, driving 69 yards in 10 plays and scoring seven points on a McCoy touchdown run (that also put him over 100 rushing yards in the first half).
The Birds started the second half by causing a bizarre turnover after a tipped pass was caught by a Tennesse offensivelineman and subsequently fumbled. A few plays later Sanchez threw his first touchdown pass of the day to James Casey, putting the Eagles up 34-17.
Some garbage-time scoring got the Titans within 16 after a touchdown pass to Dexter McClusterlate in the fourth quarter while Cody parkey nailed three more field goals, altering the score to 43-24.
The Eagles have an incredibly short week, with the Birds slated to face the Cowboys on Thanksgiving afternoon in just four days.