Corey Clement

Counting down the top 10 performances ever by Eagles RBs

Counting down the top 10 performances ever by Eagles RBs

Over the next two days, we’re going to look at the best and worst performances by running backs in Eagles history.

Two running backs appear on both lists! Which ones? You’ll have to wait till tomorrow to find out!

In putting together these lists, I went with just one performance per player. Wanted to give everybody a fair shot!

A couple of these are combo performances, with multiple running backs turning in historic performances in the same game. Because why not?

Anybody missing? Who’s at the top of your list?

1. Steve Van Buren vs. Rams, Dec. 18, 1949
The game:
Eagles 14, Rams 0, L.A. Coliseum, 1949 NFL Championship Game
The stats: 31-for-196 rushing
The story: On a day when torrential rain limited Tommy Thompson to 68 passing yards – none in the second half – Van Buren was the workhorse as the Eagles won their second straight NFL championship. Van Buren’s 196 rushing yards to this day are 10th-most in NFL postseason history and stood as an NFL (or NFC) Championship Game record until former Eagle Raheem Mostert ran for 220 yards for the 49ers against the Packers five months ago.

2. LeSean McCoy vs. Lions, Dec. 8, 2013
The game:
Eagles 34, Lions 20, Lincoln Financial Field 
The stats: 29-for-217, 2 TDs
The story: Early in the fourth quarter, the Lions led 20-14 and Shady was 18-for-69 rushing. Then he turned in one of the greatest quarters in NFL history, romping through the snow 11 times for 148 yards with TDs of 40 and 57 yards in the game’s final 14 ½ minutes. That made him one of only five players in NFL history with two 40-yard TD runs in a fourth quarter. His 217 yards shattered the franchise record.

3. Wilbert Montgomery vs. Cowboys, Jan. 11, 1981
The game:
Eagles 20, Cowboys 7, Veterans Stadium
The stats: 26-for-194 rushing, 1-for-14 receiving
The story: With Ron Jaworski struggling through a brutal game (9-for-29, 91 yards, 2 INTs), Dick Vermeil leaned heavily on the running game, and Montgomery came up huge with what remains the 11th-best rushing performance in NFL postseason history. Montgomery’s 42-yard TD on the second play from scrimmage set the tone for the blowout to come and may have been the loudest the Vet ever got.

4. Duce Staley vs. Cowboys, Sept. 3, 2000
The game:
Eagles 41, Cowboys 14, Texas Stadium
The stats: 26-for-201 rushing, TD, 4-for-61 receiving
The story: On the hottest day in NFL history – 109 degrees at kickoff – the Eagles established themselves as a legit NFC contender with a wipeout of the Cowboys in the Pickle Juice Game. Staley set a franchise record with 262 scrimmage yards – at the time 14th-most in NFL history - despite leaving the game with 13 ½ minutes left after a 60-yard run. Staley is still one of only 11 players in NFL history with 200 yards rushing and 50 receiving in the same game.

5. LeGarrette Blount, Jay Ajayi, Corey Clement vs. Patriots, Feb. 4, 2018
The game:
Eagles 41, Patriots 33, U.S. Bank Stadium
The stats: Blount 14-for-90 rushing, TD; Ajayi 9-for-57 rushing; Clement 4-for-100 receiving, TD, 3-for-8 rushing
The story: The Eagles’ incredible three-headed running back monster combined for 255 yards from scrimmage in Super Bowl LII, the most yards in a Super Bowl by a team’s running backs since the Redskins had 288 in 1988, with Timmy Smith (213), Kelvin Bryant (58) and George Rogers (17). The focus was on Nick Foles that day, and deservedly so. But the Eagles’ running backs were massive.

6. Brian Westbrook vs. Giants, Jan. 7, 2007 
The game:
Eagles 23, Giants 20, Lincoln Financial Field
The stats: 20-for-141 rushing, TD, 2-for-12 receiving
The story: Westbrook was never better than the wild-card win over the Giants in 2006. He had a 49-yard TD in the second quarter and also had a 65-yard punt return negated by a penalty on Tank Daniels. With the game tied at 20 late in the 4th quarter, Westbrook had runs of 11, 5, 5 and 13 yards down to the Giants’ 19 to set up David Akers’ game-winning field goal. He had games with more yards, but in a playoff game without the starting quarterback he carried the team on his back.

7. Swede Hanson vs. Reds, Nov. 6, 1934
The game:
Eagles 64, Reds 0, Temple Stadium
The stats: 18-for-190, 2 TDs rushing
The story: When torrential rains postponed the game and Shibe Park was unavailable for the rescheduled date because of the West Philadelphia-Central game, the Eagles-Reds game moved to Temple Stadium at Cheltenham and Vernon, now the site of the Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church. That’s where the Eagles set an NFL record for points in a game and biggest margin of victory. Hanson, who had played in that stadium for Temple, scored three touchdowns, including a 46-yarder on his first carry of the game. He finished with an NFL-record 190 yards – still seventh-most in Eagles history.  

8. Timmy Brown vs. the Cards, Dec. 16, 1962
The game:
Cards 45, Eagles 35, Busch Stadium
The stats: 5-for-50 rushing, 5-for-199 receiving, 2 TDs
The story: It was the last day of a miserable three-win season, but it was a huge one for Brown. He finished his first Pro Bowl season with 50 rushing yards on 10 carries and 199 receiving yards on five catches for 249 scrimmage yards – a franchise record until Duce broke it in Dallas. Brown’s 199 receiving yards are fifth-most in NFL history by a back. Brown had TD catches of 60 and 82 yards, one of only three RBs in NFL history with two TD catches of at least 60 yards in the same game.

9. Charlie Garner, Ricky Watters vs. Redskins, Oct. 8, 1995
The game:
Eagles 37, Redskins 34, Veterans Stadium
The stats: Garner 9-for-120, 3 TDs, Watters 25-for-139 rushing, 11-90 receiving
The story: Garner and Watters combined for an astounding 349 scrimmage yards. Garner turned nine carries into a ridiculous 120 yards and 3 TDs, including a 55-yard TD on the game’s fifth play. He remains one of only two players with 120 rushing yards and 3 TDs on nine or fewer carries. Watters became the first Eagle in 31 years with at least 90 yards both rushing and receiving in a game with the sixth-most scrimmage yards ever by an Eagle. This is the only time in franchise history the Eagles had two backs rush for 120 yards.

10. Bryce Brown vs. Panthers, Nov. 26, 2012 
The game:
Panthers 30, Eagles 22, Lincoln Financial Field
The stats: 19-for-178, 2 TDs, 4 catches, 11 yards
The story: Brown had 32 carries in his first 10 NFL games, but with LeSean McCoy hurt, the rookie seventh-round pick exploded for an Eagles rookie-record 178 yards and two TDs on just 19 carries. A week later he added 169 yards against the Cowboys, joining Eric Dickerson and Olandis Gary as one of only three rookies in NFL history with consecutive games of at least 169 yards. Brown didn’t do much more the rest of his career, but for two weeks he was the NFL’s best running back.

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Back with Eagles, Corey Clement never thought about going elsewhere

Back with Eagles, Corey Clement never thought about going elsewhere

Corey Clement became a free agent this offseason but the 25-year-old running back and Super Bowl hero didn’t want to leave. He never even entertained the thought. 

In fact, Clement gave his agent a simple directive: “Make sure this happens.” 

It happened this week. 

The Eagles and Clement agreed to a one-year deal veteran minimum deal on Wednesday that will pay him $825,000 and keep him around for the 2020 season. Earlier in the offseason, the Eagles didn’t tender Clement as a restricted free agent because they didn’t want to pay him $2.13 million. But they were still interested in having him back. And once Clement’s shoulder was cleared and the Eagles didn’t draft a running back, things lined up perfectly. 

The whole time, Clement was just eager to get back to the Eagles. 

“I want to be here, I want to retire here one day,” Clement, a Glassboro native, said. “The team means a lot to me and when I first found out the news that they weren’t going to tender me, I took it to heart a little bit because Philly is home to me. I love the city with everything. If I could bleed green I would. But it comes to a time where it’s a business; I understand. But now I can only look forward. I’m back being an Eagle and my head is held high and I’m ready to get going.” 

Entering his fourth NFL season, Clement has had a most unusual career. He went undrafted out of Wisconsin, earned a roster spot, became a hero in the biggest game in franchise history and has landed on IR in the two seasons since. 

“It’s been a roller coaster,” Clement said. 

Clement reached the ultimate peak in his rookie season. In Super Bowl LII, he caught four passes for 100 yards, including a miraculous touchdown grab in the back of the end zone. Nick Foles was obviously the right choice for MVP, but the fact that Clement even had himself in the running is amazing. 

But since that game, things haven’t gone to plan for Clement. His 2018 season ended with a knee injury and a trip to IR. And his 2019 season ended even earlier, in Week 5, with a shoulder injury, another trip to IR and another surgery. 

Going from the high of the Super Bowl to back-to-back frustrating seasons isn’t easy. Clement said making music helped him get through; music is his biggest outlet for emotions. But he also leaned on family. Clement wanted to keep his family in the loop and he wanted them to keep him grounded. 

Clement also wanted to make sure he kept them calm about his future. He had the right attitude and still does. 

“Tough times do come up,” he said. “But tough times don’t mean you just lay down and stop fighting. Nah, Keep going and that’s what I’m telling my family.”

Being a Super Bowl hero is something no one can ever take away from Clement, but it doesn’t help him very much now. It won’t help him get back to playing at a high level and it shouldn’t help him make the 2020 roster. He has to do that on his own. 

Even before his injury in 2019, Clement failed to get a single offensive touch in four games. So he’s coming back without a role or a roster spot locked up. But Clement said he’s ready to get back to a building where he knows what to expect and to a running back room he’s convinced is working harder than any other in the country thanks to having Duce Staley leading it. 

Forget the Super Bowl, forget the injuries, forget the ups and downs of Clement’s first three roller-coaster seasons. 

As Clement gets ready to play on a true “prove it” deal, he just wants to get back to being that hungry kid who showed up undrafted from Wisconsin three years ago.  

“I’m coming in as a guy who’s got their rookie mindset again,” he said. “Coming in, trying to take jobs. That’s what it’s coming down to. I gotta get back to the dog-eating mentality. Hat on, head down and let’s get to work.”

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Eagles re-sign running back Corey Clement to 1-year deal

Eagles re-sign running back Corey Clement to 1-year deal

The Eagles re-signed running back Corey Clement to a one-year minimum-wage deal Wednesday six weeks after letting him become a free agent.

Clement, a native of Glassboro and former Wisconsin star, has been plagued by injuries the last two years following a remarkable Super Bowl performance.

NBC Sports Philadelphia’s Dave Zangaro learned Wednesday that Clement was medically cleared on Monday after missing much of last year with a shoulder injury. 

On March 16, the Eagles elected to not place a contract tender on Clement, effectively making him an unrestricted free agent.     

The Eagles would have had to pay Clement $2.133 million for one year if they tendered him. This contract is worth $825,000, the minimum for veterans with three years of experience according to the new CBA.

So the decision to not tender Clement saved the Eagles about $1.3 million.

The Eagles return Miles Sanders and Boston Scott from last year, but they're the only other backs on the roster who’ve played in an NFL game. Elijah Holyfield signed with the Eagles at the end of last year, and the Eagles added Michael Warren of Cincinnati and Adrian Killins of Central Florida as undrafted rookies.

Clement is the only running back left from the Super Bowl season. The 2017 Eagles' other running backs were LeGarrette Blount, Jay Ajayi, Wendell Smallwood, Darren Sproles and Kenjon Barner, none of whom is currently with an NFL team.

Clement caught four passes for 100 yards in the Super Bowl, including and a twisting, turning 55-yard catch and run through traffic late in the second quarter to set up the Philly Special and a brilliant back-of-the-end zone touchdown from Nick Foles in the third quarter.

The 100 yards are the most in history by a rookie running back in a Super Bowl and fourth-most ever by a rookie.

Clement, 25, has 580 rushing yards and six TDs with a 4.1 career rushing average along with 32 receptions for 315 yards and two more TDs.

But injuries limited him to 11 games in 2018 and just four last year. After getting 494 offensive snaps his first two NFL seasons, he had only three last year and no offensive touches.

When healthy, Clement is a capable and versatile reserve running back and a very good special teamer. 

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