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FINAL SCORE: Eagles beat Cowboys to put themselves in the driver’s seat to win NFC East, 17-9

One win away from clinching the NFC East!

NFL: Dallas Cowboys at Philadelphia Eagles Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

The Philadelphia Eagles are 8-7 after beating the Dallas Cowboys in Week 16! Final score: 17 to 9.

The Eagles would’ve been eliminated from the NFL playoff picture if they lost. Instead, they need just ONE MORE WIN to clinch the NFC East in Week 17. Hope is alive and well!

Read on for a recap!


Coin toss: Cowboys win the toss, elect to defer. Dak Prescott didn’t screw it up this time. Eagles will receive first.

Eagles 1st drive: The game starts with a touchback as the Eagles take at their own 25-yard line. Carson Wentz’s first throw goes to a leaping JJ Arcega-Whiteside for a chunk gain. Nice catch by the rookie!

Jason Peters commits a false start to make it four games in a row with at least one of those penalties. Getting it out of the way early, I guess. The Eagles get to 3rd-and-7 and Wentz hits a contested Greg Ward over the middle for a first down. Offense showing signs of life early on. Eagles get to 3rd-and-11, Wentz rolls right, and hits a falling JJAW for the first down. Another nice catch by the rook. The JJAW game?! The Eagles get 3rd-and-15 and Wentz hits Ward along the sideline to set up a 36-yard field goal attempt from Jake Elliott. Elliott makes the kick and the Eagles have the early lead. 11 plays to get three points. EAGLES 3, COWBOYS 0.

Cowboys 1st drive: The Cowboys get to 3rd-and-3 and Malcolm Jenkins knocks away a Dak Prescott pass for Amari Cooper. Good stop to start the game. The Cowboys punt it away.

Eagles 2nd drive: Eagles start at their own 37-yard line after a mere 38-yard punt from Dallas. Miles Sanders runs and then Robert Davis (!) makes his first Eagles catch for a first down. Wentz hits a wide open Sanders on a swing pass and he has the Eagles into goal-to-go territory. What’s the deal with this offense suddenly looking effective?! Wentz drops back and throws a DIME to Dallas Goedert in the back of the end zone for a touchdown. Just a perfect throw to a tightly covered tight end. Awesome start. EAGLES 10, COWBOYS 0.

Cowboys 2nd drive: Pressure is on the Cowboys to answer here. Prescott completes a pass to Ezekiel Elliott for a 2-yard loss. Jalen Mills breaks up a pass to bring up 3rd-and-12. Prescott throws #ShortOfTheSticks to Zeke to bring up fourth down. Are we sure Dak’s shoulder isn’t an issue?

Eagles 3rd drive: Wentz keeps the option for a 7-yard gain. He runs again to bring up 3rd-and-1. The handoff to Sanders is stopped for a 3-yard loss. Not great. Eagles have to punt.

Cowboys 3rd drive: Cowboys take over at their own 21-yard line. Zeke is stopped for no-gain to end the first quarter.


Cowboys 3rd drive (continued): Prescott’s second down pass is deflected by ... Anthony Rush! Big play by the undrafted rookie free agent. On 3rd-and-10, Prescott unleashes a throw deep down the field ... and Ronald Darby is beat by Michael Gallup for a 41-yard gain. Ah, there’s that Eagles secondary that drives fans mad. In position to make a play on the ball and just can’t make it happen. What’s new? Cowboys get to 3rd-and-10 after Prescott throws behind Gallup. Rasul Douglas in for Darby at corner. Prescott shakes Derek Barnett and runs out of bounds short of the marker to bring up a 49-yard field goal. Kai Forbath makes the kick and the Cowboys are on the board. If Barnett doesn’t miss the tackle, the Cowboys probably settle for a punt. EAGLES 10, COWBOYS 3.

Eagles 4th drive: Gotta add more points here. Boston Scott takes the kick return to the Eagles’ 34-yard line, nice return. Wentz’s first down pass is tipped by Demarcus Lawrence and almost picked off ... but dropped. Phew. Eagles direct snap to Ward, who runs to bring up 3rd-and-5. Wildcat package! Wentz completes short over the middle to Goedert for the first down. Wentz hits Ward and it’s a catch-and-run for another first. Man, Ward just looks smooth and actually good out there. Weird to see from an Eagles receiver! The Eagles get to 3rd-and-1 and go empty backfield ... Wentz’s arm is hit as he throws and it’s fortunately an incompletion, not a fumble. After taking a timeout, Doug Pederson rightfully has the Eagles go for it on 4th-and-1 from the Cowboys’ 33-yard line ... and the Eagles throw again, this time with Wentz targeting Joshua Perkins. The pass is too far out in front and incomplete. Would’ve liked to see the Eagles run (quarterback sneak included) at least once there! Meanwhile, Zach Ertz is hurt.

Cowboys 4th drive: Darby is questionable to return with a hip flexor and Douglas is in for him. Prescott has all day to throw and he hits an open Gallup for an 18-yard gain. Just not enough pressure early on. Josh Sweat comes up for a tackle for loss on Zeke to bring up 2nd-and-14. Nice penetration by the second-year defensive end. Jason Witten drops a pass and it’s 3rd-and-14. On third down, Prescott checks down to Witten and the Cowboys have to punt.

Eagles 5th drive: Still no Ertz on the field. Sanders runs twice to pick up a first down. Good blocking and he’s also just looking nice out there. Sanders makes Sean Lee look silly on a short reception and gets hit out of bounds for a 15-yard penalty. Boom.

Eagles get to 3rd-and-10 from their own 45-yard line and Wentz’s third down throw for Perkins sails high. Second straight drive to end with an incompletion meant for Perkins. You just gotta go to your third string tight end in such crucial spots. I’d say the Eagles are missing Ertz, who is questionable to return.

Cowboys 5th drive: Prescott’s 3rd-and-4 pass for Cooper is dropped. Would’ve been a first down but instead it’s a punt. Nice break for the Eagles.

Eagles 6th drive: Eagles take over at their own 34-yard line with 1:52 left in the half after another bad punt from Dallas, a 30-yarder this time. Ertz is back in the game. Wentz completes to Goedert for a first down. And then again. And then a third time, this one a screen ... but it comes back due to an illegal block in the back on Jason Peters. Great. Two more throws to Goedert — the best Dallas on the field — sets up 3rd-and-6. On third down from the Cowboys’ 35-yard line, Wentz floats it up to Goedert ... who clearly wasn’t on the same page as his quarterback. The Eagles bring in Elliott for a 53-yard field goal attempt and it’s wide right. It’s not even really windy here at the Linc, Jake’s gotta make that. That Peters penalty ultimately took points off the board for the Birds.

Cowboys 6th drive: The Cowboys take over at their own 43-yard line with 29 seconds left and timeouts to work with. The Cowboys get to the Eagles’ 22-yard line with 11 seconds left and no timeouts. The Cowboys pick up an 8-yard gain and then send in the field goal team. Forbath makes it and it’s a four-point game.

Safe to say the Eagles squandered too many opportunities in the first half. They should be up by more right now.

On a positive note:


Cowboys 7th drive: Jalen Mills is hurt and now the Eagles are down to Douglas and Sidney Jones at cornerback. What could go wrong? Nathan Gerry whiffs on a Zeke catch-and-run and the Cowboys have a first down. Prescott to Gallup on an RPO and it’s another first down. Zeke takes a carry for ANOTHER first. Defense not so inspiring all of a sudden! And now Fletcher Cox is hurt, it only gets worse. Meanwhile, Mills is being carted to the locker room. Zeke runs for seven yards and Cox runs back into the game. Eagles suddenly struggling to contain Zeke. The Cowboys get to 3rd-and-1 and Prescott pitches to Tony Pollard, who is tackled for no gain. Lol, why wouldn’t they just use Zeke again? Timmy Jernigan is now hurt. During the injury, Pederson throws the challenge flag on a Pollard fumble that the Eagles seemingly recovered. “No clear recovery” incoming?! Nope! The challenge is successful and it’s Eagles’ ball. Huge play there as the Cowboys come away with zero points. Undrafted rookie free agent linebacker T.J. Edwards with the forced fumble and Jenkins with the recovery.

Eagles 7th drive: Wentz checks downs to Sanders, who runs through the Cowboys’ defense for a first down. The rookie is really showing up down the stretch. On 3rd-and-9, Wentz gets hit as he throws to bring up an incompletion. Halapoulivaati Vaitai with the allowed pressure to Lawrence. It feels like it’s been 100 years since the Eagles converted on third down.

Cowboys 8th drive: The Cowboys take over at their own 21-yard line. The Cowboys get to 3rd-and-1 again and run it forward with Zeke this time. It’s effective. The Cowboys get to 3rd-and-11 from the Eagles’ 45-yard line. Really need a stop. Prescott has Cooper wide open ... and just overthrows him. Prescott wasn’t even pressured. Jim Schwartz’s defense bailed out again.

Eagles 8th drive: Can the offense actually score some points as they start out at their own 20-yard line? Eagles pick up two first downs, nice start. Eagles go play action and Wentz delivers a 38-yard strike down the field to Ward. Hey, a chunk play! Forgot what those were like.

The Eagles are in the red zone at the Cowboys’ 19-yard line. Wentz runs for a 7-yard gain. Wentz to Ertz brings up 1st-and-goal at the 6-yard line. Gotta get at touchdown here. Sanders take a carry to put the Eagles at the 2-yard line. The Eagles get to 3rd-and-goal from the 1-yard line and the handoff to Sanders gets into the end zone for a TOUCHDOWN. Huge drive by the offense. The Eagles get flagged for delay of game on the extra point but Elliot still makes it. EAGLES 17, COWBOYS 6.


Cowboys 9th drive: This is where the Eagles’ defense is most vulnerable, right after the offense finally goes on a scoring drive. Can they get a stop here?! Mills is back in the game, by the way. The Cowboys get to 3rd-and-1 ... and Avonte Maddox breaks up the pass! Lol, Jason Garrett is just trying to get fired at this point. How does he avoid going to Zeke again? The Cowboys commit a false start and now Dallas is punting from their own 28-yard line.

Eagles 9th drive: The Eagles take over at their own 34-yard line with 14:09 left in the game. Wentz flips to Sanders on a screen and the Eagles are suddenly out to the Cowboys’ 42-yard line. That is, until Jason Kelce gets called for a holding penalty to set the Eagles back to midfield. Perkins totally blows a block and the Eagles lose four more yards. The Eagles get to 3rd-and-15 from the Cowboys’ 47-yard line and Wentz hits Ertz for a 10-yard gain. Pederson sends Elliott in for the 55-yard attempt and it’s ... not even close, wide left all the way. Elliott now 60% on his last 10 field goal attempts. That’s just not good enough for what the Eagles paid him. On a separate note, probably would’ve been worth going for it in that situation, especially after watching Elliott miss earlier.

Cowboys 10th drive: Jernigan walked back to the locker room so the Eagles are down to three defensive tackles once again. Jenkins makes a great open field tackle on Zeke to bring up 3rd-and-6. On third down, Prescott is sacked by Sweat. Coverage sack there. Garret has the Cowboys go for it on 4th-and-9 and Cobb is wide open for a first down. Welp. The Cowboys get to 3rd-and-4 from the Eagles’ 31-yard line. On third down, Prescott’s throw is out of bounds. Forbath comes in for the 49-yard field goal and makes it. Back to a one possession game. EAGLES 17, COWBOYS 9.

Eagles 10th drive: Eagles start at their own 34-yard line after another nice return by Scott. He’s giving the Eagles some special teams juice in addition to offensive juice. Arcega-Whiteside is questionable to return with the foot injury he entered this game with and the Eagles are down to two healthy receviers right now: Ward and Davis. Eagles get to 3rd-and-6 aftr Sanders is stopped for a loss and Wentz throws a DIME to Goedert for a 22-yard gain. Huge play. And now Goedert is hurt. The Eagles can barely field an offense right now. Wentz is strip-sacked by Robert Quinn — who smokes Peters — on second down and he falls on it to bring up 3rd-and-18. On third down, Wentz’s pass for Sanders is low and dropped. Eagles have to punt.

Cowboys 11th drive: Prescott overthrows Tavon Austin — who burned Rasul Douglas — down the field and it’s incomplete. Could’ve been the game-tying touchdown. Eagles defense has had a lot of breaks tonight. And not too long after that, Gallup drops another would-be touchdown with Mills beat this time. This is unnerving. Jones now in for Douglas at cornerback. The Cowboys drive to the Eagles’ 19-yard line with 1:54 remaining in the game. Vinny Curry comes up with a BIG SACK to bring up 3rd-and-8 as the clock continues to run. Prescott’s third down pass for Cooper is underthrown and incomplete. It’s 4th-and-8 from the Eagles’ 23-yard line and the Linc is ROCKING. Prescott lofts it up into the end zone ... and SIDNEY JONES (?!) knocks it down. Somehow Jones has two of the Eagles’ biggest defensive plays of the year, lol. From healthy scratch to hero. Amazing. The play is automatically reviewed and the ruling is upheld. Huuuuuuuuuuuge stop.

Eagles 11th drive: The Eagles take over from their own 23-yard line with 1:15 left in the game. Dallas has three timeouts to work with. Wentz floats a short pass to Goedert, who catches it for the first down. Unfortunately Goedert couldn’t stay inbounds. The Cowboys take their final timeout with 0:53 left in the game and the Eagles at 3rd-and-2. Sanders breaks through the line on third down and then slides in Brian Westbrook fashion. The Eagles take a knee and the game is over! Eagles win!

FINAL SCORE: 17 to 9, Eagles WIN



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