On a day when Thursday Night Football was played on a Saturday, two teams out of contention showcased some tenacious d trying to knock off their opponents, as playoff hopes are up for grabs.
The City of Brotherly Love got the cold shoulder in our nation’s capital, as the Redskins upset the Eagles 27-24, putting Philadelphia’s fate in the very capable hands of their division rival, Dallas Cowboys, who now have two chances to clinch the NFC East.
With their season on the brink, the Eagles picked a terrible time to post 13 penalties, miss two makeable field goals and not take advantage of beating a 3-11 team when there was so much at stake.
For Mark Sanchez, it was the best of times; it was the worst of times, as he threw for a career high 374 yards, accompanied by a fumble and a costly interception, which ultimately cost them the game and possibly their playoff hopes.
Sanchez may have a winning smile, but his turnover ratio is a real turn off, and his inconsistent play is a terrible tease. So, he better show the Eagles who the real Mark Sanchez is because if they come up short after going 9-3, he may not be their starting quarterback next season.
It’s also a shame that wide receiver Riley Cooper and tight end Zach Ertz franchise setting game record of 15 catches was in a losing cause. These merits are good on your resume´, but at this time of year, it’s more important what’s on the scoreboard, baby.
RG III came up big after being benched, going 16-for-23 for 220 yards with one interception, winning his first complete game for the Redskins in 13 months. His performance may not have been spectacular, but he got to play the spoiler, end a six game losing streak, and get back in the good graces of his critical coach.
In the first half of the Chargers/49ers game it looked as if San Diego’s presence in the playoffs was going to be slimmer than Angelina Jolie. With the score 28-7, not wanting to be saddened by another Philip Rivers’ interception, I turned off the game to watch a not so great, feel good movie called, “The Hundred Foot Journey.” If I only had more faith in Philip Rivers, I would have seen the entire feel good football game that had a much better ending.
Who would have ever thought that the San Diego Chargers could overcome a 21-point deficit against the hometown team with so much to prove? But with the season on the line, Rivers took his battered body and gutsy group of gallant men into overtime, stunning the 49ers with a come from behind 40-yard field goal keeping their playoff hopes alive.
After Helen Mirren and her new culinary family of Indian friends made peace over some delicious dishes, I rewound my DVR and dug into the 2nd half.
With San Francisco now leading 28-7, things continued to look very dim for San Diego, but then Kaepernick started to cool off, just when Rivers began to catch on fire. He proceeded to have a love connection with Eddie Royal, Ronnie Gates and rookie Dontrelle Inman, whose prolific coming out party couldn’t have come at a better time.
Every time the Chargers faced what appeared to be a season ending set back, their fearless leader stepped up in the pocket with precision passing, even delivering on do or die 4th downs.
When Kaepernick ran 90 yards for his first rushing touchdown, late in the 3rd quarter, it seemed insurmountable that San Diego would ever recover. But in the 4th, Rivers fought back like Rocky and even though I knew the final outcome, when the Chargers were still down 35-21 with 6:00 left in the game I kept wondering how they were going to pull this off.
And then, within less than a minute, they showed me. Rivers to Gates, to make it 35-28, then, with 32 seconds left on the clock, Rivers to Floyd to tie the score. And with 356 yards thrown, 4 TD’s, and 3 interceptions, overtime here we come.
I usually don’t like to rejoice in other people’s misfortunes, but when it comes to sports, I bend the rules. An unfortunate 49er fumble resulted in a 40-yard field goal for a San Diego win. The outcome of this game was a glorious Christmas gift for the Chargers, who deserved every piece of ribbon and wrapping paper under the tree.
And despite San Francisco’s inability to hold on to a 21 point halftime lead, an honorable mention shout out to Frank Gore who was brilliant racking up 158 yards in a losing cause.