Skelton rallies Cardinals over Eagles 21-17By ROB MAADDI, AP Pro Football Writer Monday, Nov 14, 2011
Skelton threw a 5-yard TD pass to Early Doucet(notes) with 1:53 left and the Arizona Cardinals rallied for a 21-17 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday, snapping an 11-game road losing streak.
Starting for the injured Kevin Kolb(notes), Skelton threw three touchdown passes to lead the Cardinals (3-6) to their second straight comeback win. He threw a tying TD pass to Larry Fitzgerald(notes) in the fourth quarter of a 19-13 overtime win against St. Louis last week that snapped a six-game losing streak.
Skelton, a fifth-round pick out of Fordham last year, overcame two interceptions to lead Arizona to victory, sparking talk of a quarterback controversy. He’s 2-0. Kolb was 1-6 before a turf toe sidelined him.
“That’s the one thing I’ve always liked about John is no matter if it’s going good, he’s the same guy,” said Fitzgerald, who had two TD catches and made a sensational, over-the-shoulder diving grab to set up the go-ahead score in the fourth. “If it’s going bad, he’s the same guy. He never hangs his head and he always feels as though he has the ability to make plays for this team. You really have to tip your hat to him. He prepared hard, he worked his tail off for this opportunity. And I’m just happy for him.”
Kolb was the Eagles’ starting QB last year, but lost his job to Michael Vick(notes) after sustaining a concussion in Week 1. He was traded for cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie(notes) and a draft pick in July. Kolb got a five-year, $63 million contract, with $21 million guaranteed.
“It was a unique feeling and I wish I could have been out there playing and been a part of it,” Kolb said. “We got the win and that is what really matters.”
Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt didn’t commit to either QB.
“I’ll have to look at this tape and just see where we are,” he said. “We’ll worry about that later. Kevin’s done a good job for us this year as well. Both guys have had things go squirrely in those games, so I’m not going to say that’s the case.”
Vick had another so-so performance and the Eagles (3-6) blew a fourth-quarter lead for the fifth time this season.
The defending NFC East champions were expected to be Super Bowl contenders after a slew of big-name acquisitions in the offseason. Instead, they’ve struggled miserably and have lost seven of their past eight home games.
“We’ve all got to do better,” coach Andy Reid said.
But the Cardinals answered.
Skelton completed a 30-yard pass to LaRod Stephens-Howling(notes) on fourth-and-2 from the Cardinals 32 to keep the winning drive going. On third-and-10 from the Eagles 38, Fitzgerald made an incredible catch to the 1.
Beanie Wells(notes) was stopped for no gain and lost 4 yards on the next run. But Skelton hit Doucet coming out of the backfield for a go-ahead TD to cap an 87-yard drive and give the Cardinals a 21-17 lead.
“It was a team win,” Skelton said. “I put us down with a pick-six and late pick, but the defense bailed me out.”
Skelton completed 21 of 40 for 315 yards, three TDs and two picks.
Vick was 16 of 34 for 128 yards and two interceptions. He’s hardly resembled the guy who was an MVP candidate and Pro Bowl starter last season.
“We were never able to get in a rhythm,” Vick said. “I never got comfortable. You have to find a way to get it done. I didn’t do it.”
Helped by a crucial penalty, the Cardinals tied it at 14 on Skelton’s 7-yard TD pass to Fitzgerald in the fourth quarter. An offside call on Asomugha allowed Arizona to extend the drive after an incomplete pass on third-and-10.
A few plays later, Fitzgerald caught a pass that was tipped by Joselio Hanson(notes) and scampered into the end zone for his franchise-record 70th career TD. Roy Green had 69 TDs for the Cardinals from 1979-90.
Vick’s short pass was intercepted by defensive end Calais Campbell(notes) at the Cardinals 17 in the third quarter. Vick has been intercepted 10 times this season. He threw just six in 2010 when he was the AP Comeback Player of the Year.
NOTES: FS Nate Allen(notes) (concussion) and LG Evan Mathis(notes) (toe) also didn’t play for Philadelphia. LB Joey Porter(notes) (knee), FS Kerry Rhodes(notes) (foot) and TE Todd Heap(notes) (hamstring) sat out for the Cardinals. … The teams hadn’t played each other since the NFC championship game in January 2009. The Cardinals, as a home underdog, beat the Eagles 32-25 to advance to the Super Bowl.