Let’s put aside the Philadelphia Eagles present Nick Foles Vs. Michael Vick situation for a moment, to take a look at one of the greatest moments in Philadelphia sports history in the latest installment of our Philly Phlashback series.
As the 3-3 Eagles prepare to welcome in the 3-3 Dallas Cowboys with the NFC East lead on the line, let’s take a trip down memory lane.
It was just three days after Christmas 2008, December 28th, 2008 to be exact. Philadelphia sports fans would have been more than happy with the early Christmas present that they received in late October when the Phillies won the cities first major pro sports title in 25 years, but little did they know, a present almost equally as satisfying was left under the tree, and unwrapped until December 28th.
The Eagles entered a 4:15 week 17 showdown with the Cowboys, needing a ton of outside help for the game to even have any playoff implications on it. And amazingly, they got two upsets to open up the sixth and final playoff spot in the NFC.
Michael Bush had a career day for the Oakland Raiders rushing for 177 yards, to help the Raiders upset the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 31-24 and end the Buccaneers season.
Those victories set up a special game at the Linc against the 9-6 Cowboys, with the winner advancing to the playoffs, and the loser going home.
The game had a slow first quarter, with David Akers and Nick Folk trading field goals, and as the first quarter ended, it was a 3-3 game. It hardly felt like a game where one team was set to put up 40 plus points.
The Eagles offense exploded in the second quarter. Donovan McNabb ran a touchdown in, threw two to Brent Celek and Correll Buckhalter, and David Akers ended the quarter with a 50 yard-field goal to put the Birds up 27-3 heading into the locker room.
Any thought that the Cowboys would bring any momentum into the second half was quickly erased with 11:23 left when Brian Dawkins flew through the air and stripped the ball from Tony Romo, and Eagles defensive-end Chris Clemons scooped up the ball and returned it 73 yards for a touchdown that put the Eagles up 34-3. Joselio Hanson put the icing on the cake just over three minutes later hen he returned a fumble from Marion Barber 96 yards to the logo, to give the Eagles a 41-3 lead that they never looked back from.
The Eagles would go on to win 44-6 on one of the best nights to be a Philadelphia sports fan ever, and turn around to beat Adrian Peterson and the Minnesota Vikings in the wild-card playoffs next week. The Eagles upset the Giants in the divisional round of the playoffs behind a big game from Asante Samuel, before falling just short in a comeback attempt against the Arizona Cardinals in the NFC Title Game. But as the video below will remind you December 28th, 2008 was a special day to be an Eagles fan.