The victory evened the Eagles’ record at 7-7. With two regular season games left, they’re one game behind the Dallas Cowboys for the NFC East lead and a half-game back of the Minnesota Vikings for the second wild-card spot in the NFC.
“Nick’s been here before,” standout Eagles defensive tackle Fletcher Cox told NBC after the game. “The team has just got to rally behind him.”
Yes, Foles most certainly has been here before. He took over for Wentz last December when Wentz suffered his season-ending knee injury, also in Los Angeles against the Rams, and led the Eagles to the first Super Bowl triumph in franchise history.
Foles began this season as Philadelphia’s starter as Wentz worked his way back, then reassumed his role as the backup and oh-so-handy insurance policy. Foles sat and watched while the Eagles struggled through this season in a manner unbecoming of a reigning Super Bowl champ. But now he’s back in the lineup and under the spotlight, trying to save what seemed to be a lost season.
“I really didn’t look at the time on the clock, the score,” Foles told NBC. “I just wanted to go out there when Doug [Pederson, the Eagles’ coach] called the play, just communicate in the huddle, just tell the guys, ‘Hey, we’re living for this moment. Stay in this moment. Don’t think of anything else, all the distractions or the score or whatever it may be. Just execute this play.’ And we were able to do that. It’s just a great team win today, and the Rams are an amazing team.”
The Rams actually aren’t so amazing these days, emerging from Sunday night’s game with their first set of consecutive regular season losses in Coach Sean McVay’s two-year tenure. But they did manage to make things interesting in the game’s late stages after being dominated for three quarters.
The Eagles led, 30-13, entering the fourth quarter. But the Rams steadied themselves to draw within a touchdown, and had their chances to tie the game. They fumbled away a punt with just less than three minutes remaining, only to see Eagles kicker Jake Elliott miss a 53-yard field goal attempt with a little more than a minute to play.
The Rams moved down the field. But after tailback Todd Gurley allowed himself to be tackled in bounds with the Rams out of timeouts, quarterback Jared Goff was left spiking the ball to give them one final chance from the Philadelphia 18-yard line with four seconds to go. Goff’s throw into the end zone was incomplete as time expired, and the Rams’ sudden vulnerability will extend into at least one more week.
“Two games are not gonna define our season as long as we don’t allow it to,” McVay said at his postgame news conference.
The Eagles’ season, meanwhile, again has possibilities entering a Week 16 matchup at home with the Houston Texans . Foles was effective against the Rams, throwing for 270 yards in a 24-for-31 passing performance. He got the football to wide receiver Alshon Jeffery, who had eight catches for 160 yards. It all looked so promising.
Can Foles actually do it again?
“I’m not trying to think about it,” Foles said. “I’m just trying to stay in the moment with this. I’m blessed to be part of an amazing team, the Eagles franchise … So I’m just enjoying the moment.”