By Joseph Santoliquito
Green Bay, WI (CBS) — Nick Foles didn’t throw seven touchdowns this time, but he did find some imaginative ways to get the ball into the end zone against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday.
With a little help.
A deflected pass between two converging Packers landed into the waiting hands of DeSean Jackson for a 55-yard touchdown, an underthrown ball was caught by a diving Riley Cooper for a 45-yard TD.
A lot of fortuitous bounces and occurrences aided the Eagles in a 27-13 victory over the offensively challenged, injury-riddled Packers at Lambeau Field.
The Eagles now move to 5-5 and could have a share of first place if the New Orleans Saints beat the Dallas Cowboys Sunday night. The Eagles have six games left, with four at home, maybe not a good thing considering they lost 10-straight home games dating back to a 19-17 victory over the same Giants on September 30, 2012, and have gone eight-straight quarters without an offensive touchdown at home.
The Eagles have Washington, a bye week, Arizona and Detroit—all at home—in the next four weeks, which plays out very favorably. Then they close at woeful Minnesota, host Chicago, and close at Dallas on Dec. 29.
It’s a situation that could vault the Eagles into a playoff spot, which looked remote just a few weeks ago.
“I think everyone contributed to this win, offensively, defensively, we played a lot of guys today,” Eagles’ coach Chip Kelly said. “I have no explanation [why the Eagles are 0-4 at home]. We’re not good at home and we’re good on the road, but we better figure it out, because we’re coming home. I don’t have an answer for that.”
Against Green Bay, Foles finished completing 12 of 18 passes for 228 yards and three touchdowns, outdueling Packers’ third-string quarterback Scott Tolzien, who came on for starter Seneca Wallace after he pulled his groin after Green Bay’s first series. Wallace was replacing the injured Aaron Rodgers.
Foles has thrown 16 TDs without an interception this season.
“Guys are making plays and I couldn’t tell you one thing or another [why there haven’t been any interceptions], I just have to continue to improve,” Foles said.
Cooper continues to excel. Over the last two weeks, he’s caught a combined eight passes for 241 yards and five touchdowns. This is the same Riley Cooper who couldn’t shake man coverage not too long along, and suddenly, coupled with Foles, has transformed into Steve Largent.
The Eagles never trailed, forcing Tolzien and the Packers to go away from pounding back Eddie Lacy. Before Sunday, the last time Tolzien completed a meaningful pass was wearing a Wisconsin uniform on January 1, 2011 against TCU in the Rose Bowl.
It was the Packers’ defense that had problems containing the explosive Eagles offense. After nine plays of 20 yards or more against the Packers, the Eagles now have an NFL-best 63 plays that have gone for 20 yards or more.
LeSean McCoy rushed for over 100 yards, ending with 25 carries for 155 yards. It marked the first time he picked up 100 yards since rushing for 116 yards in the Eagles’ 31-20 victory over Tampa Bay on October 13.
“Our guys got on their blocks and controlled the line of scrimmage, and also Nick, making so many different plays, that puts the defense in a bind,” McCoy said. “The guys up front got it done in a big way. I think we have the same preparation each week. Hopefully we can get a win at home this week and take care of that.”
“I thought our offensive front did a decent job blocking, I thought Brent Celek was great on the perimeter, really getting the corner for us, setting the edge,” Kelly said. “That’s what this league is all about, it’s about executing. And I thought our offensive line, our backs, our quarterback, executing.”