ARLINGTON, Texas — Sick.
That’s the first word that came to Fletcher Cox’s mind in the wake of the Eagles’ 29-23 loss to the Cowboys Sunday afternoon at AT&T Stadium (see observations).
Sick. That’s a good word to describe it.
After the defense played well enough the entire game, it let the Cowboys drive down the field 75 yards on 13 plays in 8:05 to walk off the field with a win that pretty much sinks the Eagles’ chances to win the NFC East — and make the playoffs (see NFL playoff picture).
Carson Wentz, who had gotten hot late in the game, had to stand on the sideline and watch the loss without getting the football in the extra period.
“It’s sickening, man,” Cox said. “Knowing that you go out there and you play for moments like that. You want to capitalize on moments like that. Obviously, you want to win the football game. That’s the end result you’re paid for and it sucks to lose a game the way we did tonight.”
During that drive, the Eagles let the Cowboys convert on 3rd-and-9. They let them convert on 4th-and-1. And the game-winning touchdown came on 3rd-and-7 when Amari Cooper finished off the game with a 15-yard touchdown catch.
On that final play, Rasul Douglas did everything right. He got his hand in on the football, but it popped in the air and Cooper was able to snag it and cruise into the end zone to give the Cowboys a win.
“Sometimes, that’s what happens,” Douglas said. “That’s part of the game.”
After winning the opening coin flip by calling heads, the Eagles called tails in the overtime period. It came up heads. The Cowboys got the ball first … and last.
“Even the play they scored on at the end, he was in position,” Jenkins said. “They just literally win the coin toss.”
The Eagles ended up surrendering 576 yards to the Cowboys on Sunday afternoon. It’s the fourth-most yards the Eagles have ever given up in a regular season game and the most in the modern era.
But the Eagles’ defense actually played OK, all things considered. They gave up yards but got three takeaways after coming into the day with just nine on the season.
“We gave everything we had,” Jenkins said. “And literally the ball didn’t bounce our way.”
Jenkins, the leader of the defense, said he was proud of the way the defense battled Sunday. He thought they did enough to win but couldn’t pull it out.
Instead, the Eagles were left to board their long flight back to Philadelphia thinking about how they might have just let their playoff chances vanish.
“We didn’t finish the game,” Cox said. “We had them a couple times and we didn’t finish. I think that’s the biggest thing. They made the play at the end to win the game. And we just gotta move on from it.”
The Eagles can move on, but there’s no changing what happened in North Texas Sunday afternoon. They were so close to moving into the driver’s seat of the NFC East and they just couldn’t get it done.
Sick is the right word.
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