It was a tough night for the Eagles. They offense didn’t seem to hit their stride until late in the game, and the run defense was just too porous to hold New Orleans in check on the ground. Nick Foles’ touchdown pass to Zach Ertz late in the game was enough to put the Eagles on top by a point, but their lead wouldn’t last long. After a solid kickoff return, Drew Brees marched the Saints down the field, where a field goal as time expired gave them at 26-24 victory.
MVP – DeMeco Ryans
Ryans had a pretty strong game, and he gets the MVP award simply because no one else really stood out. Ryans had 10 tackles (eight of which were solo tackles), one pass deflection and even picked off Drew Brees in the first half to give the Eagles good field position. The leader on defense all year long, he was constantly getting a hat to the ball and in the mix to make a play.
LVP – The Run Defense
The run defense looked like they couldn’t stop anyone. The Birds’ unit, which has been good for the latter part of the year, surrendered 185 yards and essentially took some of the pressure off of Drew Brees. The defensive line was not able to get a good enough push up front to make plays at the point of attack, and New Orleans was able to pick up big chunks of yardage on early down situations.
X-Factor – Mark Ingram
Mark Ingram’s 97 yards on the ground killed the Eagles. Stopping the run had been the Birds’ strong-suit of late, but they couldn’t do it tonight when they needed to the most.
Key Stat – 25%
That was the Eagles’ third down conversion percentage. If you want to win football games—especially in the playoffs—you need to keep drives moving. The Eagles had trouble doing that throughout the course of the night, missing out on plenty of points.
Tweet of the Game
It's been a great season. I love these guys and fans. I'm so excited for what the future holds. Next year we're coming for that Lombardi!
— Julian Vandervelde (@BatMandervelde) January 5, 2014
What This Loss Means
The Eagles have been eliminated from the playoffs, finishing the season at 10-7.