Foles, Eagles Defense Leave Giants winless 36-21
The Philadelphia Eagles did the unexpected in keeping the Giants winless.
They got key plays from their bottom-ranked defense and a timely performance from Nick Foles after he replaced an injured Michael Vick late in the first half, sending Eli Manning and the Giants to another loss with a 36-21 victory Sunday.
The Giants’ 0-5 start is their worst since the 1987 strike season when the NFL used replacement players for three games. It comes just two years after New York won the Super Bowl.
Foles threw fourth-quarter touchdown passes of 25 yards to Brent Celek and 5 yards to DeSean Jackson as the Eagles (2-3) snapped a three-game losing streak by forcing three interceptions by Manning in the fourth quarter.
Vick, who ran for a team-high 79 yards and threw for another 105, left the game with a hamstring injury late in the second quarter after a 13-yard scramble.
LeSean McCoy added a 1-yard touchdown run and Alex Henery kicked five field goals for the Eagles, who gained 439 yards in total offense.
David Wilson scored on a 5-yard run for the Giants and Manning threw two touchdowns to Rueben Randle in the third quarter to give New York a 21-19 lead.
Foles and the Eagles’ defense finished off New York in the fourth quarter.
The once mighty Giants’ defense has now given up at least 31 points in each of its first five games, tying an NFL record set by the Chicago Cardinals in 1954.
The difference in this one was Foles, who finished 16 of 25 for 197 yards. Right after the Giants took the lead on Manning’s 6-yard TD pass to Randle, he led an eight-play, 57 yard drive that ended with Henery’s 41-yard field goal with 1:04 left in the third quarter.
The Eagles made the plays in the fourth quarter.
On the ensuing play after linebacker Mychal Kendricks intercepted a pass by Manning (24 of 52 for 334) and returned it to the 25, Foles hit Celek, who got away with a push-off on safety Ryan Mundy in the end zone. That increased the lead to 29-21.
The touchdown pass to Jackson just minutes later was set up by an interception by Brandon Boykin near the Giants 40.
After being outscored 69-7 in their last two games, the Giants’ offense scored on its opening possession. Wilson capped a 62-yard, five-play drive that featured a 49-yard pass to Hakeem Nicks with a 5-yard run. Wilson injured his neck on the final play of the first quarter and did not return.
It would be the lone highlight of a half that featured drops, penalties and fumble by Brandon Jacobs, who replaced Wilson.
An unnecessary roughness penalty and a questionable decision by coach Tom Coughlin on a penalty helped the Eagles score on their second possession. Coughlin decided to accept a third-down holding penalty after the Eagles came up 4 yards short at the Giants 47. Vick scrambled for 34 yards on third-and-19 to set up Henery’s 40-yard field goal.
The Eagles eventually took a 19-7 halftime lead, scoring on their final four possessions of the first half, the last coming after Foles took over for Vick and led a 75-yard, 11-play march that led to Henery’s fourth field goal, a 36-yarder as time expired.
It had the fans booing the Giants as they left the field.
Henery also hit from 27 and 29 yards, with the 29-yarder set up when Kendricks recovered Jacobs’ fumble at the New York 47.
McCoy scored the Eagles’ touchdown on a 1-yard run that was set up by a 56-yard pass from Vick to Jackson, who had seven catches for 132 yards. The pass seemed to go through the hands of Giants cornerback Trumaine McBride.
Nicks led the Giants with nine catches for 142 yards.
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