From the first drive through the end of the first quarter it looked more like the Eagles were the one seed and the Saints the six. The Eagles were flying high, intercepting Drew Brees on the very first play of the game. From there, Eagles quarterback, Nick Foles, took Philly on a seven play, 76-yard drive, hitting Jordan Matthews on stride for a wide open 37-yard touchdown.
The Saints would go three-and-out on their second drive, failing to gain one yard. Good Ol’ Saint Nick would again take the Eagles right up the field, this time a 10 play, 75 yard drive, that ended with Foles sneaking in from the one-yard line. Eagles up in a hurry, 14-0.
Brees and the Saints would muster up some yards in their third drive, but only 23 of them before being forced to punt again. Foles had the Eagles at mid-field and was looking to strike again with a deep pass to Zach Ertz, but Saints cornerback, Marshon Lattimore, would take back the momentum and intercept the pass.
The interception ignited the home crowd and sparked a Saints offensive drive that would go 12 plays for 79 yards ending with a Keith Kirkwood two-yard touchdown catch. Offenses on both sides of the ball would stall for a few drives but the Saints would find a way to add a field goal just before half making it 14-10, Philly.
Unlike the first quarter, the Eagles sputtered out of the gates in the second half, going three and out. On the Saints next possession they’d show why they’re the number one seed, going on an 18 play, 92-yard drive, that would take up nearly the entire third quarter (11:29). It would be another two-yard touchdown pass from Brees, this time to Michael Thomas, that would put the Saints ahead for good.
With left tackle Jason Peters and guard Brandon Brooks suffering game ending injuries in tonight’s game, Philly’s offense struggled to find a rhythm. The Eagles “D” also battled injuries as Rasul Douglas (ankle), Fletcher Cox (foot) and Michael Bennett all left the game at one point – Cox and Bennett would return but who knows just how much the injuries impacted their ability to be disruptive.
The Saints would tack on another field goal early in the fourth quarter making it 20-14, home team. While it was only a six point game, it felt like the Saints were clearly in charge and would cruise to victory. That was until Saints kicker, Will Lutz, missed a 52-yard field goal with just three minutes left in the game.
Here we go again. Flashbacks of 2017 Nick Foles was at the forefront of everyone’s mind and the Eagles had the momentum. Not for long though as the drive lasted just four plays before Marshon Lattimore again stole the momentum with his second interception after a Foles pass slipped right through receiver, Alshon Jeffery’s, hands. . This time it would seal the deal. Saints win, 20-14.
The black and gold will be at home again next week in a “Battle of the Seans”, when Head Coach, Sean McVay, brings his Los Angeles Rams to town to battle Head Coach, Sean Payton’s New Orleans Saints. These two teams have been on a collision course for quite some time.
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