The Eagles received the ball first after the Saints deferred on the opening kickoff. Josh Huff set the offense up with nice field position after returning the ball 40 yards. Philadelphia actually picked up a first down, but then the offense stalled as Sam Bradford threw a pass that was almost picked off on third down. The Eagles went for it on fourth and seven but Bradford's deep pass for Riley Cooper wasn't even close to being complete.
New Orleans didn't start out so hot on offense either. Bennie Logan sacked Drew Brees to help force a Saints punt. Unfortunately for the Eagles, they couldn't take advantage. Bradford completed some passes to move the team into scoring range but then threw a terrible interception in the end zone. Cooper was wide open, and Bradford just completely underthrew him.
New Orleans took advantage of Philadelphia's turnover by driving the field and scoring a touchdown. Brees hit a wide open Ben Watson for the score. Watson was lined up out wide and the Eagles didn't have anyone lined up across from him. That's not good.
The Eagles got another promising drive going on offense thanks to the addition of Ryan Mathews into the offense. And then just like that, it was wiped out by another Bradford interception into the end zone. Yet another bad throw.
Philadelphia's first points of the game came on a Bradford throw to Huff. The second-year Eagles receiver caught the ball and ran it in after two Saints defenders near him ran into each other. Huff gained some style points with a front flip into the end zone.
The Eagles got hosed on third down late in the first half on a pass interference penalty that got picked up. Darren Sproles was clearly tackled by a defender before the ball arrived, but the officials said the ball had already passed. Wrong call. Fortunately for Philly, Fletcher Cox forced a fumble on Drew Brees and Jordan Hicks recovered. The Eagles were forced to settle for a 39-yard field goal to take the 10-7 lead. Yes, Caleb Sturgis actually made it.
Malcolm Jenkins, who is having a great season, got burned early in the third quarter by Brandin Cooks to allow a 47-yard reception. The Eagles buckled down in the red zone and forced the field goal to tie the game.
Philadelphia answered back with a touchdown. The Eagles drove into scoring position thanks to a Huff catch that put them near the goal line. Mathews punched it in on a short run for the score.
It wasn't long after that the Eagles scored again. Cox sacked Brees and forced another fumble. This time, the big man recovered it as well. Pure domination by a great young player. The turnover set up a Bradford touchdown to a wide open Brent Celek in the end zone to give Philadelphia a two score lead.
The Eagles extended their lead to 16 after Saints punter Brandon Fields absolutely shanked a kick that went for 13 yards. Sturgis hit a 29-yard field goal, which drew loud sarcastic cheers from Eagles fans. Another long drive from the Eagles, highlighted by runs from Mathews, set up another short Sturgis field goal to give the Eagles a three possession lead.
Just when it looked like the Saints might have some life after Brees connected on a deep pass to Willie Snead, the Eagles defense forced another fumble. This time it was DeMeco Ryans who popped the ball out, with Byron Maxwell recovering. The Eagles took advantage of the turnover by moving into scoring position and getting yet another Sturgis field goal.
The rout continued when Walter Thurmond picked off a bad throw from Brees and returned it close to the goal line. Marcus Smith (!) actually had a pressure on the play. A four-yard run from Murray gave the Eagles a 29 point lead.
The Saints scored a garbage time touchdown to end the game. Brees to Cooks.
Stay tuned for much more Eagles-Saints post-game coverage.