Young Drives Eagles to 17-10 Win Over Giants
Vince Young led the Eagles on an 18-play, 80-yard drive late in the fourth quarter to give the team a much needed win over their division rival Giants, 17-10. Young - starting for injured quarterback Michael Vick - hooked up with Riley Cooper - starting for the injured Jeremy Maclin - on an 8-yard touchdown strike to put the Birds ahead for good. With the victory, the 4-6 Eagles now sit just two games behind both New York and Dallas in the NFC East.
Jason Babin's forced fumble of Eli Manning with under two minutes remaining sealed the deal. It was Babin's 10th sack of the season and it stopped a Giants drive at the Eagles 21 yard line. Victor Cruz's 47-yard catch had the Giants deep in Eagles territory, but Babin got to Manning to jar the ball loose and end the game.
Although they came away with a win, it again got dicey late. Cruz beat Nnamdi Asomugha on a 24-yard touchdown pass with 11:36 remaining as Manning scrambled out of the pocket and directed his receiver to the back corner on the strike. That tied it at 10-10.
Young finished 23-of-36 for 258 yards with two touchdowns and three interceptions. It was far from perfection, but his fourth quarter drive kept the Eagles from faltering late in the game, something everyone has become accustomed to this season. Five times the Eagles had blown a lead this season in the fourth quarter - but not on this night at Metlife Stadium.
Cooper caught five passes for 75 yards and the game-winning touchdown, and his teammate on the opposite side, Desean Jackson, hauled in six catches for 88 yards in his return from being deactivated last week against Arizona for missing team meetings.
Lesean McCoy couldn't make it 10 straight games with a touchdown, but his 60-yard run with under a minute left allowed the Eagles to kneel on it and send them back down the turnpike with their playoff hopes still intact.
OPINION: Young was fantastic in his first start since November of last year, stepping in for the injured Michael Vick. For not taking many of the snaps in practice this season, Young came in, managed the game nicely, and led the Eagles to a much-needed victory. It keeps their heart beating in the now-tighter NFC East.
The defense was also spectacular, save the Manning-to-Cruz touchdown in which Asomugha was beatedn badly. The big-play Giants were unable to ramp up the offense as the defensive line continually had pressure in the face of Manning.
If the Eagles can continue this sort of defensive intensity next week against New England (obviously easier said than done), then perhaps they can scratch and claw even closer in the division.
Merrill Reese call: Vince Young to Riley Cooper 8-yard TD -- Coop TD 4th Q 17-10