The NFC Championship will be a battle between Eagles former back up Nick Foles, and Vikings former back up Case Keenum
The two were teammates just two seasons ago for the Rams, as Foles eventually lost his starting gig with Keenum taking over.
“Nick is doing a tremendous job here with this scheme, and Case is doing well with the Vikings,” current Eagles safety, and one time Rams teammate of both Rodney McLeod said. “They have both been put in a situation where they were back ups and now they are starting and that’s all you can ask for from someone in this league. They have put their teams in position to be in the NFC Championship game.”
But the ties between the Eagles, Vikings, and Foles and Keenum get even more strange and incestious than that. Here is a look at how we got to where we are — with two back up middle of the road 20-something quarterbacks playing in the second most important game in the game of football:
1. In 2015, the Eagles traded Foles to the Rams in exchange for Sam Bradford under then head coach Chip Kelly.
2. Foles had rough season in St. Louis, and was replaced at quarterback by Keenum.
3. After drafting Carson Wentz at No. 2 overall in 2016, the Eagles shipped Bradford to the Vikings (to replace the injured Teddy Bridgewater).
4. The Vikings signed Keenum to back up Bradford prior to the 2017 season, and took over as starter after an injury to Bradford.
5. The Eagles signed Foles to back up Wentz prior to the 2017 season, and took over as starter after an injury to Wentz.
6. Foles and Keenum will face off in the NFC Championship game.
Much has been, and will be written about the embarrassment of riches slated to play alongside Tom Brady this weekend in the conference championship games. The trio of Foles, Keenum and Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles may be the worst triumvirat of signal-callers ever to collectively make it this far. But at least one of those three quarterbacks (possibly two if the Jags can upset New England) will be playing in Super Bowl 52 in two weeks. And that says something about the current state of the NFL.
“I think it says that they are on great teams, quite honestly,” Eagles head coach Doug Pederson said. “I’ve said this a lot of times and I’ll say it again: It’s not about one guy. Even Tom Brady has weapons on offense and playing good defense, and it’s the same way with the other three teams. They have got weapons around the quarterback. They all play great defense. And listen, ultimately, bottom line, it comes down to who can take care of the football.”
Neither Foles or Bortles have turned the ball over this postseason, Keenum has just once.