Remembering that time Foles was a Hall of Famer

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Remembering that time Foles was a Hall of Famer

What does Brent Celek remember about the last time Nick Foles faced the Oakland Raiders?

"I remember, I think I had the first touchdown," Celek said, "and then there were six more after that."

Good memory.

Foles has faced the Raiders just once in his career and put together a historic game. Back on Nov. 3, 2013, during his first stint with the Eagles, Foles threw seven touchdown passes, tying the NFL record. He's one of eight players to ever throw seven in one game. His cleats and jersey from that 49-20 win are hanging in the Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio.

As Foles gets set to face the Raiders on Monday night for the first time since that incredible game, all those memories have come flooding back.

"I remember that year as our team was just trying to figure out our identity at that point," Foles said. "We had had ups and downs and we were just trying to put it all together. I look back at that day as a day we put everything together. And sort of that 'ah ha' moment, we can do this. We know who we are. We know we can be explosive and we just sort of took off at that point."

Coming into that game at O.co Coliseum in early November, the Eagles had lost their previous two games and had scored a combined 10 points in them. The team was 3-5 and the first year under Chip Kelly had started going the wrong way.

Then everything clicked.

Foles hit Celek for his first touchdown pass with 5:18 left in the first quarter. Then he hit Riley Cooper twice and Zach Ertz once before the half ended. Foles added three more touchdown passes in the third quarter.

"It was Foles, the receivers, some great play calls," center Jason Kelce said. "It was a combination of a lot of things going really, really well. He would have ended up setting the NFL record if we kept him in, but we ended up pulling him."

The Eagles pulled Foles from the game with just under 9 1/2 minutes to play in the fourth quarter and put Matt Barkley in. The score at the time was 49-13. Foles had two drives — both three-and-outs — after his record-tying seventh touchdown pass.

Cooper had five catches for 139 yards and three touchdowns. DeSean Jackson had five for 150 and a touchdown. LeSean McCoy had four for 36 and a touchdown. Ertz had five for 42 and a touchdown and Celek had three for 27 and a touchdown. Ertz's 15-yard touchdown catch in the second quarter was actually the first of his career.

Foles didn't have his second-career four-touchdown game until last week, when the Eagles beat the Giants. With that game, Foles became second on the all-time Eagles' list of QBs with four-touchdown, zero-interception games. Donovan McNabb had eight.

There are less than a dozen Eagles still on the team from that 2013 season and Foles' amazing 27-touchdown, two-interception season.

That seven-touchdown game is still what everyone remembers from that year.

"It was my rookie year, a long time ago," Lane Johnson said. "But it was probably one of the funnest games I've had. Having a good game that game and being a part of Nick's legacy, it was awesome."

More money might not be enough to keep Chris Long in Philly

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More money might not be enough to keep Chris Long in Philly

The Eagles have given veteran defensive end Chris Long a raise, but according to one report, Long is concerned enough about his playing time with the Eagles that he's mulling his options regarding his future.

What is certain is that at some point before March 15, Long signed a new contract with the Eagles that increases his 2018 base salary from $1 million non-guaranteed to $2½ million fully guaranteed.

However, NFL Network's Michael Silver reported Monday that Long may decide he doesn't want to accept the new contract — which he already signed.

According to Silver, Long is concerned about how many snaps he would get as a third-down rusher following the addition of Pro Bowl pass rusher Michael Bennett.

The Eagles officially acquired Bennett on March 14, although the deal was reported a week earlier. Long's new contract was filed with the NFLPA on March 15, but there is a good chance he agreed to it and signed it before the Bennett acquisition.

Whether or not Long knew Bennett was coming to the Eagles when he signed the restructured deal is unknown. But at some point Long knew about their interest in Bennett and even gave Bennett a "glowing recommendation" when the Eagles asked, according to an interview Long gave to SBNation.  

Long wouldn't appear to have many options. He could retire, in which case he would have to return the $500,000 bonus he received from the Eagles last week.

He could request a trade, which would be bizarre for someone who signed a contract extension just a few days earlier.

Or he could simply play under the terms of the contract restructure and pay increase, which was first reported by Field Yates of ESPN and confirmed by NBC Sports Philadelphia with a source familiar with the renegotiation.

As for the contract itself, including that $500,000 roster bonus — which was also in the previous version of the contract — Long would receive $3 million guaranteed this year instead of $1.5 million non-guaranteed plus $750,000 in easily achieved roster bonuses.

Long had five sacks and forced four fumbles last year as a rotational defensive end. He wound up playing 496 snaps, 10th-most on the defense and only about 10 per game fewer than starter and Pro Bowler Brandon Graham and five per game fewer than starter Vinny Curry, who the Eagles released.

Long, who turns 33 next week, has 63½ career sacks. His 5.0 sacks last year were his most since 2013. He's won back-to-back Super Bowls the last two years with the Eagles and Patriots.

What happens next?

Long has demonstrated that the money is secondary to him. He donated his entire 2017 base salary to charity.

At some point very soon, the Eagles will need him to decide whether he's even going to have a 2018 base salary.

Terrell Owens digs deep to find his Hall of Fame presenter

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Terrell Owens digs deep to find his Hall of Fame presenter

A day after we found out that Brian Dawkins picked Troy Vincent to introduce him at the Pro Football Hall of Fame induction ceremony this summer, Terrell Owens has picked his presenter. 

No surprise: It's not Donovan McNabb.

After alienating many people in the league throughout his tremendous career, Owens picked a name from his early days. Longtime NFL assistant coach George Stewart, who was Owens' receivers coach in San Francisco, will introduce T.O. at the 2018 induction. 

In a video released by the Hall of Fame, Owens said Stewart "knew what to get out of me."

Now special teams coordinator and assistant head coach for the Chargers, Stewart has been an NFL coach for three decades. He began his time in San Francisco in 1996 (Owens' rookie season) as a special teams coach but was their wide receivers coach from 2000-02.

"Things that George Stewart may say, it may be shocking to a lot of people, but not to him because he knows who I am," Owens said. "... To know who Terrell Owens is, you really have to spend some time with him. Fast forward, George Stewart became a father figure to me."

The first season Stewart became the 49ers' receivers coach, Owens went to his first of six Pro Bowls and was named an All-Pro for the first of five times in his career. Owens was a Pro Bowler and an All-Pro in all three of the seasons that Stewart held the position in San Francisco. 

Of course, Owens' growth under Stewart led to his becoming one of the biggest stars in the NFL.

Eventually, Owens forced his way out of San Francisco and got to Philadelphia. With the Eagles, Owens had a short and tumultuous two seasons, but was also dynamic on the field and nearly helped them pull off a Super Bowl win over the Patriots. 

Owens averaged 93.5 receiving yards per game during his time in Philadelphia, the highest average in franchise history. It wasn't his play that led to his downfall in Philly. It was his beef with McNabb, along with his attempt to strong-arm the Eagles into a new contract. 

Owens was a divisive personality for his entire career. It's likely the reason it took him three tries to make it into the Hall of Fame. Because his numbers don't lie: He's one of the best receivers of all time.