Philadelphia at Green Bay

Eagles rally past Packers on McNabb's late TD pass

SportsLine.com wire reports
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GREEN BAY, Wis. -- The Philadelphia Eagles held onto the wet ball, something Brett Favre and Ahman Green couldn't do.

Donovan McNabb threw a 6-yard touchdown pass to Todd Pinkston with 27 seconds left to give the Eagles a 17-14 victory over the Green Bay Packers on a rainy Monday night.

The Eagles (6-3) stayed a game behind Dallas in the NFC East, and the Packers (4-5) blew their shot at closing within a game of slumping Minnesota in the NFC North.

"It surely wasn't pretty. I would imagine Mike Sherman would say the same thing," Eagles coach Andy Reid said, referring to his Green Bay counterpart. "But we overcame the adversity. In the fourth quarter, it was great leadership by Donovan. In that last drive he really put it together."

The Packers drove to midfield with eight seconds left when Favre, playing with a broken right thumb, fumbled for the third time, sealing Green Bay's third home loss of the season.

The Packers fumbled six times, losing two. The Eagles had no fumbles.

"The balls were very, very slick," Sherman said. "It seemed to affect us more than it did them, however, which concerns me."

Green rushed for a team-record 192 yards and scored on a 45-yard run and a 24-yard screen pass. But he fumbled two more times, giving him an NFL-leading seven.

Pinkston caught his first touchdown pass of the season when he beat cornerback Bhawoh Jue off the line and got free in the left side of the end zone.

Jue had replaced starter Al Harris, who was bothered by cramps.

Jue also was victimized for the winning score in the Packers' overtime loss to Kansas City in their last home game Oct. 12.

McNabb said he wasn't picking on Jue but just reading the defense: "It was a great route by Todd."

"We just came together at the end," McNabb said. "What we showed tonight is why we're a winning team. Never count us out. It's an exciting season right now."

The Eagles have won four straight games in which they trailed or were tied entering the fourth quarter.

"I have a feeling that's the way it's going to be," Reid said. "This team, they're fighters. I'll take them any way I can get them."

So will McNabb, but he'd appreciate a breather for a change.

"We just have to find ways to make it a little easier," McNabb said. "I don't know how many times other people can watch it. It makes it exciting that we just continue to fight."

Philadelphia started the winning drive at its 35 with 2:42 remaining and McNabb completed passes of 11 yards to Duce Staley and 20 yards to Chad Lewis.

Green's 45-yard TD on fourth-and-1 with seven minutes left gave Green Bay a 14-10 lead. It came after the Eagles had taken their first lead at 10-7 on McNabb's 1-yard run with 9:32 left in the fourth quarter.

McNabb set up his first rushing touchdown of the season with a 51-yard pass to James Thrash when defensive back Mike McKenzie slipped on the soaked grass.

McNabb completed 15 of 31 passes for 198 yards.

Favre said last week he's having so much fun running Green Bay's turbocharged offense that he's leaning toward returning next season rather than retiring. But he had a miserable Monday night.

He was 14-of-22 for 109 yards with one TD, one interception and three fumbles, two of which he lost, including the final one, which was recovered by defensive tackle Darwin Walker.

"It was a combination of both" his thumb and the rain, Favre said. "My hand felt numb, but it was slick out there."

Green and Favre each fumbled twice in the first half before hooking up on a 24-yard touchdown on a screen pass for a 7-0 halftime lead.

Just when it appeared there would be a scoreless first half at Lambeau Field for the first time since Oct. 26, 1980 -- and only the second time ever -- Favre found Green on the right side with three blitzers bearing down on him.

Green zigzagged his way into the end zone with 40 seconds left in the second quarter, becoming the first running back in team history to catch a TD pass in four straight games.

Thrash returned the second-half kickoff 33 yards and Philadelphia went 52 yards in 10 plays for David Akers' 21-yard field goal that made it 7-3. Green Bay's Ryan Longwell came up just short on a 45-yard field-goal attempt -- his first miss of the season -- after Green lost five yards on a questionable play call in which Favre handed the ball to his running back on a delayed draw on third-and-6 from the Eagles 22.

Eagles linebacker Nate Wayne made a one-handed interception of a pass by Favre one play after he sacked his former teammate in the second quarter. He returned it 33 yards to the Green Bay 34, where Favre made a touchdown-saving tackle.

"It was a nice pick," Wayne said. "I can't take that away from myself. The only thing is I got tackled by a quarterback."

Notes

  • Green surpassed Dorsey Levens' record of 190 yards rushing set against Dallas on Nov. 23, 1997.
  • NASCAR Winston Cup winner Matt Kenseth, a native of Cambridge, Wis., exchanged helmets with Favre on the field before the game.
  • The Packers lost for the first time in 43 games under Favre when they ran more than they passed.

AP NEWS
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Copyright 2003, The Associated Press, All Rights Reserved

 
 
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Eagles QB Donovan McNabb throws for a TD and runs for one -- his first of the season -- in the win.
 
Eagles QB Donovan McNabb throws for a TD and runs for one -- his first of the season -- in the win. (AP)
 

 

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QTR,
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Scoring Summary
1ST QUARTER
None
2ND QUARTER
TDAhman Green, 24 Yd pass from Brett Favre (Ryan Longwell kick is good), 0:40. Drive: 5 plays, 54 yards in 1:07.
3RD QUARTER
FGDavid Akers 21 Yd, 9:29. Drive: 10 plays, 52 yards in 5:31.
4TH QUARTER
TDDonovan McNabb, 1 Yd run (David Akers kick is good), 9:22. Drive: 4 plays, 54 yards in 1:40.
TDAhman Green, 45 Yd run (Ryan Longwell kick is good), 7:03. Drive: 5 plays, 66 yards in 2:19.
TDTodd Pinkston, 6 Yd pass from Donovan McNabb (David Akers kick is good), 0:27. Drive: 8 plays, 65 yards in 2:16.
Philadelphia
PassingCP/ATYDSTDINT
D. McNabb15/3119810
RushingATTYDSTDLG
D. Staley1053012
D. McNabb526116
C. Buckhalter923011
B. Westbrook5103
T. Pinkston1-110-11
ReceivingRECYDSTDLG
J. Thrash255051
D. Staley245034
C. Lewis233020
T. Pinkston326110
F. Mitchell32309
J. Ritchie21106
R. Mahe1505
Green Bay
PassingCP/ATYDSTDINT
B. Favre14/2210911
RushingATTYDSTDLG
A. Green29192145
N. Davenport424010
T. Fisher217011
B. Favre2807
ReceivingRECYDSTDLG
A. Green332124
D. Driver218012
R. Ferguson21608
A. Freeman115015
W. Walls215014
J. Walker2908
B. Franks1404
W. Henderson1000
Complete Player Stats