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The Student News Site of Loyola University Maryland

The Greyhound

Foles, Eagles stun Patriots


The light has finally shone on one of the most plagued sports cities in the country. Yes, after 47 long years of patient (or maybe not-so-patient) waiting, the Philadelphia Eagles are Super Bowl champions.

On Sunday Feb. 4, the Eagles dethroned the defending champion the New England Patriots at the U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Led by an unlikely hero, quarterback Nick Foles, the Birds soared to victory by a final score of 41-33.

The Super Bowl proved to fulfill the David v. Goliath prophecy, as the Birds denied the Pats what would have been their second consecutive Super Bowl victory. In a high-scoring shootout that fit the bill more for a NCAA Big 12 football game than an NFL bout, the Eagles and Patriots combined for 1,152 total yards. The total shattered the previous record for total yards by over 200 yards (

Both offenses were lead by their QBs. Five-time champion Tom Brady racked up 505 yards in the air. Brady’s performance may go largely unspoken of, as the Pats came up short in the game, but Foles’ display will not soon be forgotten. In one of the most unlikely underdog stories of all-time, Foles tallied 373 passing yards and three passing touchdowns.

Oh yeah, and a receiving touchdown.

Leading 15-12 late in the second quarter, the Birds decided to roll the dice. Facing a fourth and goal from the New England first-yard line, Eagles coach Doug Pederson elected to go for it. Pederson called for a timeout, and called Foles to the sideline.

“Philly special,” suggested Foles. Without hesitation, Pederson was sold. Pederson replied, “Yeah let’s do it.”

As Foles stepped to the line, he appeared to call for an audible. As he stood screaming behind the right tackle, the ball was snapped. Tight end Trey Burton motioned around from the left side and received a pitch, which he then tossed to Foles, who stood all alone in the end zone.

That was just the kind of game it was: unlikely.

The second half saw much of the same offensive dominance on both sides of the field. Foles added two touchdown passes to bring his total to four overall touchdowns on the day. On the opposition, Brady added to his historic Super Bowl résumé and threw three second-half touchdown passes. The first and third were hauled in by tight end Rob Gronkowski, with the second received by wide out Chris Hogan.

Brady was almost perfect.

With 2:21 remaining in the fourth quarter, the stars aligned for another miraculous Brady fourth-quarter drive that has made it impossible to ever count the Patriots out of a game. The Pats had the ball on their own 25-yard line with one timeout remaining.

Just as quickly as the stars aligned for a comeback, they were scattered.

On the second play of the drive, Philadelphia defensive end Brandon Graham busted the New England offensive front and stripped the ball loose from Brady. Philadelphia recovered the ball, and left all of New England speechless.

By doing this, Graham hammered the final nail in the Patriots’ coffin.

Graham’s sack penned the final chapter in the Eagles’ ultimate underdog story. First, a mid-December season-ending injury to QB Carson Wentz seemed to dash any hopes of an Eagles playoff run.

That’s when Foles, a quarterback who the Eagles had traded in 2015, and was released by the St. Louis Rams only a year later. Oh yeah, he was also released in 2017. Nearly all found it hard to believe that Foles would be able to play well enough to keep the Eagles afloat, let alone to help them strive.

Then, once the club made the playoffs, they were underdogs in every game, including two on their home turf.

Finally, the story changed. The Eagles silenced all remaining doubters in the Super Bowl. Not to mention that Foles was also named Super Bowl MVP in the process.

It seems fitting though that as the underdog story of the 2017 season Eagles comes to a close, the greatest underdog of all, Foles, is able to conclude it with an exclamation point.


*Photo courtesy of Tony Webster via*




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Foles, Eagles stun Patriots