Michael Vick returned as the Eagles starting quarterback after missing three games recovering from broken ribs, to face the red hot Miami Dolphins. And although Vick was solid throughout the game, it was a dominating performance by the Eagles defense that enabled them to walk away with the 26-10 victory.
Although both teams entered the game at 4-8, the Dolphins had won 4 of their last 5, with their only loss coming by 1 point to the Dallas Cowboys. The Eagles had been struggling, as they were 1-2 in Vick’s absence, and lost 4 of their last 5. Backup Vince Young had been spotty in relief of Vick, throwing for 866 yards with 4 TDs, but also throwing 8 INTs in 3 starts.
Today, the Eagles struck quickly and jumped out to a 24-7 halftime lead, scoring all 24 of their points in the second quarter, including 2 touchdowns by LeSean McCoy, and a 34-yard TD pass from Vick to DeSean Jackson. That was more than enough for the victory, as the only scoring in the second half came on a Dan Carpenter field goal, to cut the lead to 24-10 and then a late safety by the Eagles when they sacked backup quarterback J.P. Losman in the end zone in the fourth quarter.
Vick looked solid, helping to take advantage of three turnovers in the second quarter, and finished the day 15 of 30 for 208 yards, with 1 TD and 1 INT. But it was the Eagles defense that made the difference – a defense loaded with Pro Bowl players but that had looked soft at times this year. They registered three turnovers in the second quarter, including an interception from Kurt Coleman, and fumble recoveries by Asante Samuels and Mike Patterson. The turnovers set up 17 of Philadelphia’s points, plus they scored 2 points on the safety in the fourth quarter, and recorded 9 sacks in the game.
Dolphins quarterback Matt Moore left with a head injury after starting 11 of 19 for 95 yards with 1 TD and 1 INT, and he was replaced by J.P. Losman who finished up 6 of 10 for 60 yards. With all the sacks, the Dolphins only managed 95 net passing yards and 109 yards on the ground, 103 of it from Reggie Bush. Bush also had 27 receiving yards, accounting for 130 yards when the team barely cracked 200 yards total.
The Eagles still look to be out of the playoff picture, but this was a good victory that they can build on looking ahead to next season.