Eagles executed onside kick with 10 players

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Riley Cooper's recovery of an onside kick in the fourth quarter was a big part of their comeback win Sunday. (David Maialetti/Staff Photographer)

The Eagles didn't even need all 11 players to execute Sunday's key onside kick in the fourth quarter against the Giants.

Ralph Vacchiano of the New York Daily News mentioned in his article today that the Eagles had only 10 players on their special-teams unit when David Akers' kick was recovered by Riley Cooper. I just re-watched it, and he's right.

Akers had four players to his right: Moise Fokou, Akeem Jordan, Daniel Te'o-Nesheim and Colt Anderson.

And five to his left: Eldra Buckley, Omar Gaither, JaMar Chaney, Riley Cooper and Dimitri Patterson.

Total: 10.

So was this a mistake by the Eagles, or did they intentionally only have 10 players on the field? The Giants think it was the latter.

"They did something good," Giants special-teams captain Chase Blackburn told Vacchiano. "They ran a guy off right in front of everybody and they're all looking at each other saying, 'We've (only) got 10.' So we're doing the same thing, trying to recount. And then you forget about that 'alert' a little bit. That's kind of what happened."

Wow.

The TV cameras from Fox do not catch the 11th man running off the field for the Eagles, so I can't identify who it was. But I'm sure Bobby April will be asked about it on Thursday.

Just another strange nugget from a strange game.

ANDY AND THE CHALLENGES

Former NFL VP of Officiating Mike Pereira, who now works for Fox, has confirmed what we already knewAndy Reid had another bad day with the challenge flag on Sunday.

Per Pereira, Reid should have challenged the Hakeem Nicks catch in the first quarter and the DeSean Jackson fumble in the fourth quarter. The Nicks catch went for 22 yards on a third down, and the Giants ended up scoring a touchdown on the drive.

And the Giants scored 7 points off the Jackson fumble in the fourth, making it a 31-10 game.

One note from Pereira that was interesting: If Giants linebacker Jonathan Goff had only touched Jackson's handwarmer, he would not have been down. But replays showed that Goff grazed Jackson's back as well.

Pereira says the refs got the Jeremy Maclin fumble at the end of the first half wrong. He said it should have been ruled an incomplete pass. Eli Manning, of course, hit Nicks for a touchdown on the Giants' ensuing possession as they took a 24-3 lead going into halftime.

COUSIN BILLY REJOICES

This video is making the rounds and is pretty classic. I don't think it needs any introduction, but I will warn that there is one bad, four-letter word used.

If you missed it from earlier Tuesday morning, I posted a Q&A on the Eagles' playoff scenarios.


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