The 2013 Philadelphia Eagles had a strong presence at the annual Pro Bowl event, fielding four players for the NFL’s All-Star game. Foles (replacing Super Bowl-bound Russell Wilson) joined DeSean Jackson on Deion Sanders’ hand-picked roster while Evan Mathis and LeSean McCoy represented the team on Jerry Rice’s squad.
The 2014 edition of the Pro Bowl had altered their format in an attempt to increase competitiveness at a game that appeared more and more watered down by the year. With wrinkles such as having players from the same organization lined up against one another, the league had clearly put an emphasis on trying to return some level of legitimacy to Sunday’s game.
DeSean Jackson put the Eagles’ first stamp on the game early in the first quarter when he fought off a pair of defensive backs in the endzone to bring in a touchdown from Andrew Luck. The 36-yard flea-flicker score put ‘Team Sanders’ up by seven. Jackson also had a lost fumble on the afternoon to go with two other receptions.
LeSean McCoy, the starting running back for ‘Team Rice’ also had a fumble on what was otherwise an uneventful Pro Bowl for the NFL’s leading rusher (3 car, 14 yds; 1 rec, 18 yds). Foles, who was behind Luck and Cam Newton (a pair of number one overall picks), did not enter the game until the last play of the 3rd quarter.
On his second drive of the game, Foles and ‘Team Sanders’ drove down the field for a game-tying touchdown to make the score 21-14. The Eagles quarterback had two particularly impressive throws on the drive: the first, a 39-yard pass to Antonio Brown on 3rd & 3. Brown had Cleveland’s Joe Haden draped all over him and Foles put the ball where only the Pittsburgh wideout could have caught it.
His second highlight came on his touchdown pass, a 12-yard dart to another Brown, Jordan Cameron. Foles threw the pass off one foot and passed his receiver open to give his team the lead. After Team Rice took the lead with a touchdown and two-point conversion, Foles had :30 to try to lead a miraculous comeback.
Were it not for Justin Tucker’s ‘Alex Henery-esque’ misfire (kidding) on a 67-yard, potential game-winning field goal attempt, Foles 2-3, 26 yard drive to set up the attempt would have gone down in Pro Bowl lore. Joking aside, his pair of completions to Dallas’ Jason Witten rounded out a solid 7-10, 89 yard afternoon, once again not throwing an interception. The Rice won the game 22-21.
Foles was named offensive MVP for the game, despite his side losing. He, along with Derrick Johnson (the game’s defensive MVP), were rewarded with GMC SUV’s to go with the title. While the playoff loss to New Orleans was a disappointing and sudden end to a fantastic season for Foles, the recognition of winning the MVP in what was one of the more entertaining Pro Bowl’s was a nice touch moving forward for the Eagles quarterback.
In somewhat related news, here’s video that surfaced of Foles showing off his lighter side at practice during the week leading up to the Pro Bowl.
— NFL (@nfl) January 24, 2014