Sunday, November 03, 2013

Foles grabs hold of NFL record book as Eagles rip Raiders

Alameda, CA --  Nick Foles returned  under center for the first time in two weeks, and enjoyed his finest day as a professional.

The  Arizona  product shook off  the effects of a  concussion and tied an NFL record  by throwing  seven touchdown passes, including four in the first half, en  route to a career-high 406 yards on 22-of-28 completions in Philadelphia's 49-20 rout of Oakland in an inter-conference clash.

Foles -- who posted a 158.3 passer rating with the defining effort -- joined Joe Kapp, Sid Luckman, George Blanda, Y.A. Tittle, Peyton Manning and former Eagles QB Adrian Burk for the honor.

“We had a great week of practice as a team, and I thought the guys came out and did a great job today. It was a great team win," said Foles in deflecting any personal accolades. "Receivers did a great job downfield of making plays and I had time to throw, so with all of that together, it was a great team win. We suffered two defeats recently and our offense sputtered a little bit, so it was nice to get back on track and we just have to keep building on it.”

Riley  Cooper benefitted  most from Foles' hot streak, collecting career-bests of 139 yards and three TDs on five receptions for the Eagles (4-5), who set an all-time team record for points in a road game against their Sunday foes after coming  up with  10 total points in consecutive division losses to the Cowboys and Giants.

Asked if he'd ever done something similar at any point up until the NFL, Foles quipped "only in a video game."

DeSean  Jackson  led all players  with 150 yards and  a score on five catches, while Zach Ertz, LeSean McCoy and Brent Celek also notched a TD grab each.

"We tried some five-man pressure. We tried some four-man pressure. We tried some max-drop, and really, nothing worked," Raiders head coach Dennis Allen lamented.

It was an encouraging sign for the Birds, who head to Green Bay next Sunday still in the thick of the race for first place in the NFC East.

Terrelle  Pryor was  22-of-41 for 288 yards and a pair of interceptions before bowing  out late with a knee injury for the Raiders (3-5), who surrendered the most  points in one  contest since a 55-20 drubbing at the hands of the Ravens on Nov. 11, 2012.

Matt McGloin ended up 7-of-15 for 87 yards in relief.

Oakland's scoring consisted of two Sebastian Janikowski field goals along with  an  8-yard TD  run from  Rashad Jennings  and a  late 2-yard  score by  Jeremy Stewart.  Jennings wound up with 102 yards on 15 carries and 74 yards on seven catches.

Philadelphia scored on its first touch, as Foles connected with Celek on a 2- yard strike to cap an 84-yard drive.

Rod Streater's 66-yard catch-and-run down the left sideline helped set up Oakland's response, a 24-yard make by Janikowski, but the Birds came right back.

On a drive which bled into the second quarter, Foles found Cooper for a 17- yard connection and 14-3 edge to wrap up an 82-yard march, and the duo hooked up once again to complete Philly's next possession, a 63-yard catch-and-run down the middle of the field to make it 21-3.

Pryor's winding 35-yard scramble to the visitors' 8-yard line setup Jennings' dash to the end zone on the next play, cutting Oakland's deficit to 11 points midway through the second.

But Foles increased the Birds' lead to 28-10 on a 15-yard scoring pass to Ertz in the right corner of the end zone, and the Raiders' only answer before halftime was a 53-yard make from Janikowski.

Foles picked up where he left off at the outset of the second half, posting two more TD passes in the first 3 1/2 minutes on a 25-yard connection to McCoy and a 46-yard hookup to a wide open Jackson for a 42-13 contest. 

"I don't think Nick Foles has ever seen anything on film that would give him any indication he'd throw for seven touchdowns," Oakland cornerback Charles Woodson said. "Nobody thought today he'd come in and have this kind of day."

Jackson's 59-yard catch deep down the middle on 1st-and-10 from the Philly 32- yard line was the precursor to Cooper's third TD catch of the day, a 5-yard strike for a 36-point spread which gave Foles a share of the league record book. 

“Whenever I’ve looked at records throughout my whole life, the greatest things about them is the guys you do them with,” said Foles. “It’s something that is special for the Philadelphia Eagles organization. It’s a special moment for the organization but it’s special for all of our teammates.  We just have to keep getting on the right path.”

Oakland's only answer to the onslaught was a 2-yard run from Stewart inside the game's final minute.

Notes: The Eagles had gone 0-3 all-time on the road at Oakland, and their only prior road win against the Raiders franchise was a 33-27 OT decision at LA Coliseum on Nov. 30, 1986 ... Burk worked his magic for the Birds in a 49-21 win over the Redskins on Oct. 17, 1954 ... Foles' previous best for passing yardage was 381, in a 23-21 win at Tampa Bay on Dec. 9, 2012, and the most touchdown passes in one game was three, in a 31-20 win at Tampa on Oct. 13 ... Philadelphia recorded its most points in a road game since whipping Washington by a 59-28 score on Nov. 15, 2010 ... Matt Barkley subbed in the fourth quarter for Foles and was 2-of-3 for 13 yards ... McCoy was limited to 44 yards on 12 carries, with Bryce Brown leading the Birds' rushing attack with 54 yards on seven attempts ... Streater ended up with 98 yards on five catches ... Oakland claimed a 560-542 edge in total offense. 

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