Eagles take down Patriots for first franchise Super Bowl victory

Category:  Sports
Wednesday, February 7th, 2018 at 5:46 PM

The Philadelphia Eagles won their first Vince Lombardi Trophy in NFL history on Sunday after defeating five-time world champions the New England Patriots in a 41-33 victory.

Eagles backup quarterback and Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles led the team to a win after first-string quarterback Carson Wentz was unable to play due to an ACL injury he sustained in December. Despite Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s veteran status, Foles was able to throw for three touchdowns, with Eagles tight end Trey Burton also throwing one.

The Eagles almost scored a touchdown within 8 minutes of the first quarter, but the pass was blocked, resulting in the Eagles having to settle for a field goal for the first points of the game.

The Patriots tied up the game with a field goal themselves with around 4 minutes left in the first quarter, but the Eagles came back with a 34-yard throw to Alshon Jeffrey in the end zone to take the lead again. Kicker Jake Elliot missed the point-after attempt, and the first quarter ended 9-3. 

In the first minute of the second quarter, Patriots kicker Stephen Gostkowski missed a field goal due to a mishandled snap by punter Ryan Allen. At the 8:48 mark, Eagles running back LeGarrette Blount rushed 21 yards for a touchdown, but the Eagles failed on the ensuing two-point conversion attempt. 

Shortly after the following kickoff, Brady threw to running back Rex Burkhead for a gain of 46 yards. Eventually, Gostkowski kicked a 45-yard field goal. With 5 minutes left in the half, Foles threw an interception to Patriots defensive back Duron Harmon after the ball was knocked out of Jeffrey’s hands. 

New England would gain their first touchdown just before the two-minute warning as running back James White rushed 26 yards to the end zone, but Gostkowski missed another point-after.

Foles threw to Corey Clement for 55 yards. Then, in what might be the best play of the game, Clement stood at the shotgun position, and received the snap before handing the ball off to tight end Trey Burton who then threw the ball to a wide open Foles in the end zone. With this play, Foles became the first player to ever have both a touchdown pass and reception in a Super Bowl game.

With that, the halftime score was 22-12, with the Eagles leading by 10 points.

New England began the second half with the ball and, at around the 12-minute mark, Brady threw a 5-yard pass to tight end Rob Gronkowski in the end zone. This time, Gostkowski was able to complete the play with a successful extra point kick. 

Philadelphia responded with an 85-yard rive capped by a 22-yard touchdown pass to Clement; after the play was reviewed, it was ruled complete by referee Gene Steratore, much to the dismay of New England and its fans.

The Patriots came back with a touchdown near the 3-minute mark with a 26-yard pass to wide receiver Chris Hogan, bringing the game to within 3 points. 

In the fourth quarter, Elliot kicked a 42-yard field goal, breaking the record for longest field goal kick by a rookie, which was previously 41 yards. At the 9:22 mark, Brady passed to Gronkowski again for a touchdown, giving New England their first lead, 33-32. 

Then, with just over 2 minutes to go, Foles threw an 11-yard touchdown pass to tight end Zach Ertz, which was reviewed and ultimately ruled complete. After a botched two-point conversion, it was anyone’s game.

On the ensuing Patriots drive, Eagles defensive end Brandon Graham slipped through and knocked the ball out of Brady’s hands, causing a fumble which was recovered by the Eagles. With 1 minute left, Elliot broke his own record with a 46-yard field goal to put the Eagles up 41-33.

The next drive for the Patriots was nerve-wracking, as New England was at fourth-and-10 when Brady passed to Danny Amendola for 13 yards and a fresh set of downs. With 9 seconds left, Brady, just narrowly escaping being sacked, threw a Hail Mary pass to Gronkowski. Gronkowski, however, was swarmed by defenders and was unable to complete the pass, making the Eagles the 2018 Super Bowl champions.

Dakota Palmer is the executive editor for The Spectator. She can be reached at edinboro.spectator@gmail.com.

Tags: football

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