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Eagles-Giants: What we learned

The SportsXchange

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- For about five minutes of the opening quarter of the game, the New York Giants looked like they would be unstoppable this week in their quest for their first win of the 2013 campaign.

However, it was not meant to be as the Philadelphia Eagles came out the survivor of a 36-21 decision at MetLife Stadium as Nick Foles came off the bench to throw for two touchdowns and lead four scoring drives after taking over for an injured Michael Vick late in the second quarter.

"I felt really comfortable throughout the whole game. There wasn't a span where I felt, 'Ok, I'm ready to go in,'" said Foles, who finished the day 16 of 25 for 197 yards, two touchdowns and a 114.9 passer rating. "I felt good when I went in. We needed to get things going, and the win was a team win."

Three fourth-quarter turnovers by Giants quarterback Eli Manning led to 14 Eagles points which completely erased any positive feelings gained on running back David Wilson's 5-yard touchdown on the Giants' opening possession.

"Offensively, I didn't think they stopped us," said Giants head coach Tom Coughlin. "I think we stopped ourselves."

The Eagles would ultimately overcome the 7-0 Giants lead in the second quarter thanks to a 1-yard touchdown run by LeSean McCoy and two field goals by kicker Alex Henery.

Turnovers continue to hurt the Giants.

The first turnover came when Giants running back Brandon Jacobs lost the ball at his 48, which led to another Henery field goal to make the score 19-7 at the half.

The Giants tried to fight back in the third quarter, taking a 21-19 lead thanks to two Manning touchdown passes to Rueben Randle.

However, the Eagles didn't panic when the Giants got some momentum and just stayed the course, confident that things would swing back in their favor.

"In situations like that you just have to calm yourself and (take it) one play at a time," Foles said. "You know that if you keep building on those one plays, you're going to bust one and get some momentum and the team's going to feed off it."

That's exactly what happened as the Eagles benefitted from a 27-yard pass interference penalty called against Giants cornerback Prince Amukamara against DeSean Jackson, a penalty that contributed to the 57-yard, eight-play Eagles scoring drive cumulating on a 41-yard field goal by Henery to make it 22-21.

From there, the Eagles never looked back. Manning had three consecutive interceptions on drives in the fourth quarter, the Eagles capitalizing on two of them with touchdowns receptions by tight end Brent Celek and Jackson to make it 36-21.

The loss drops New York to 0-5, their worst start since in a non-strike season since 1979, when they finished 6-10. The loss, their second against the NFC East, also puts a severe dent in any postseason hopes the Giants might have as no team has ever started a season 0-5 and rebounded to make the playoffs.

What the Eagles said

"Nick looked great. He played a great game. That's what we expect out of Nick and that's what Nick expects out of himself." -- quarterback Michael Vick on Nick Foles' performance.

What the Giants said

"I honestly believe he's trying so hard to get us a win (that) he's putting too much on himself." -- Coach Tom Coughlin when asked what's wrong with Eli Manning, who now has thrown 12 interceptions this season.

What we learned about the Eagles

1. The Eagles are a resilient bunch, a fact they proved after falling behind 21-19 in the second quarter following the second touchdown reception by Giants receiver Rueben Randle. The Eagles ran off 17 unanswered points, capitalizing on two Giants turnovers.

2. The Eagles have two very good quarterbacks on their roster. There was no dropoff when Foles stepped in for the injured Vick late in the second quarter. Sure, they lose Vick's ability to scramble and gain yards on the ground, but that's about all that ends up missing from their game, as Foles was spot on with 64 percent of his pass attempts this week.

What we learned about the Giants

1. New York's 12 penalties in this game now gives them 35 through five games, which ties the Giants with Tampa Bay for fourth-most in the NFL.

2. The Giants once again leaned more toward the pass, throwing the ball 52 times to just 17 runs despite the game being close up until the fourth quarter.
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