Philadelphia Eagles: Trey Burton throws shade at the not-so-Philly Special

(Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
(Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images) /

Ah, the “Philly Special,” is any other play in Philadelphia Eagles history as highly regarded?

It’s generated scores of internet memes, earned a special play in Madden, and even inspired Bud Light enough to erect a statue in the play’s honor outside of the Linc; even if said statue no longer represents anyone presently on the team.

While the play has been replicated, by the Eagles and others, it’s never quite generated the same level of excitement or production since its debut on that fateful day back in February.

So naturally, when the Eagles’ offense needed a little bit of juice in the first half of their Week 2 bout versus San Francisco 49ers, Nick Sirianni took a page out of his former head coaches’ playbook and opted to run Doug Pederson‘s signature play with Greg Ward filling the Trey Burton option quarterback role.

Needless to say, Burton was not particularly impressed with the results.

Trey Burton wasn’t impressed with the Philadelphia Eagles’ trick play.

After running up to an early 3-0 lead, the Philadelphia Eagles’ offense just couldn’t seem to catch a break.

They “scored” a big touchdown off the blossoming Jalen HurtsJalen Reagor connection that was negated by an out of bounds call, had a very makeable field goal blocked by second-year former top-14 pick Javon Kinlaw, and just generally failed to move the ball effectively against the Niners’ dominant defensive line rotation.

So naturally, in desperate need of a spark in the waning moments of the second half, Nick Sirianni opted against putting three more points on the board in favor of taking a10 point lead into the half and opted to go for it from the three, down three, with


4:28 left to play.

“Hey coach, you want Philly Philly?”

From the start, the play looked good. Hurts executed the handout and ran for the pylon, the ball was flipped to Greg Ward on the sweep, and he planted it looking for his man.

The only problem? No one was open.

Hurt got tied up with slot cornerback K’Waun Williams, and unfortunately, with no other options on the play, Ward was forced to throw the ball away, and the Niners took the ball back at their three.

The results? 7-3 Niners heading into the half.

I agree Trey, talk about a bummer.

While one could quibble with the decision to go for it on fourth and 3, it ultimately didn’t matter. The Niners would go on to score multiple touchdowns and that extra three points would have been relevant in no time. With few reliable ways to pick up yardage sans incredibly hard to replicate chunk plays, the Eagles’ decision to try to shift the momentum in their favor was a wise one, even if it didn’t work out.

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Should the “Philly Special” be retired? No. I think the play is valid and could be evolved into some pretty interesting iterations under the eye of a creative play-caller but maybe, just maybe, it shouldn’t be called in the first half of a 3-0 game, especially when there isn’t a secondary receiving option scheme into the area if Jalen Hurts is covered.