The Philadelphia Eagles’ magical ride comes to end in New Orleans

(Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
(Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images) /

After falling to the New Orleans Saints, the Philadelphia Eagles quest to defend their Super Bowl championship has come to an end.

For the Philadelphia Eagles, this hurt. This loss hurts. It will hurt now and will hurt for a while moving forward. The image of Alshon Jeffery laying face-first in the ground is one that will be cemented in the minds of Eagles fans until at least next season.

We can sit here, dig in and diagnose the loss to the New Orleans Saints. There will be talk about the struggles of the offense, the defense’s inability to get third-down stops, and ultimately whether the Eagles should have let the clock run down to the two-minute warning.

But for the sake of this article, let’s take a step back and look at the big picture because, for the first time since the end of the 2016 season, the Eagles will move forward eliminated from the postseason, nearly two-years ago.

More from Philadelphia Eagles

The Eagles weren’t supposed to be here. Everything that has happened over the past two seasons was not supposed to occur.

Doug Pederson was a backup plan and was not supposed to have made the postseason in two of his first three years. Instead, he is the last coach left from the 2016 hiring class and has a 29-19 record with a Super Bowl Championship.

Nick Foles was done after 2015. The Rams cut him and he was ready to retire. But, he didn’t, and he will likely walk away from Philadelphia a hero, with a Super Bowl trophy and is probably the top reason why the Eagles were even playing today.

The list goes on and on.

This is a group of castoffs and guys who have been counted out over and over again. This is a team that was counted out when they were 13-3, and then again at 6-7, even if that one was more warranted.

We were told 2017 was a fluke when the Eagles were 11-2, and when Carson Wentz went down in December the season was supposed to be over. The Eagles were told over and over again the past two seasons that they were not good. They didn’t listen, they just kept chugging along.

The season was over after the loss to Dallas, it was over after the first loss to the Saints. They were expected to go to Los Angeles, lay down and accept their playoff fate was over. But this group just doesn’t accept failure, they won’t take no for an answer.

A secondary full of cast-offs, a running back group led by a guy in his mid-30s and a guy who wasn’t even expected to make the roster, and let’s not forget the quarterback who silenced any critics over the past two years.

The Eagles weren’t supposed to beat the Rams, they weren’t supposed to beat the Texans, they weren’t supposed to make the postseason. But guess what, they did. Eagles down to fourth-down in Chicago, got that too.

The fact of the matter is that none of what happened was supposed to happen over the past two years. That just speaks to this team and this coach. When we say there is something special about this group, it’s not just cliché, they are one very special group of individuals.

As Jeffery fell to the ground, his quarterback walked up to him with one simple message:

“He told me he loved playing with me and we wouldn’t have won a Super Bowl without me” Jeffery said after the game.

That just speaks to this special bond, this brotherhood. Wentz stood by Foles every step of the way and all 53-men on this roster would do the same for each other. There will never be finger-pointing, this team wins together, and will lose as a team.

Guys played injured, and never laid down. This year’s run was not easy and may not have lasted as long as last season’s, but it may have been almost as special because of how it went down. It hurts, but let’s be sure to appreciate this team and the fight they showed.

They went down fighting, they never laid down, and as a city, we couldn’t ask for more.

So as one chapter comes to a close, another begins. Trust me, the Eagles will be back, and they will be better than ever. It’s been an amazing run these last two seasons, and there is no doubt that next season could begin another.

Foles’ time in Philadelphia might be over, and if it is, then this city will never be able to repay him for what he has done. He will always be a champion, and nobody will ever be able to take that away from him or this city.

Philadelphia Eagles: Thanks for everything Nick Foles. dark. Next

So for now, the Eagles season is done. But for Pederson and the guys that will be back in 2019, this run is not done…