Eagles vs. Vikings score, takeaways: D'Andre Swift has career night in homecoming to pace Philadelphia win
Swift sets a career high in rushing yards to get the Eagles to 2-0
PHILADELPHIA -- D'Andre Swift played his first regular-season game in his hometown of Philadelphia. Let's just say the St. Joe's Prep standout didn't disappoint.
Swift had a dominant night running the football, rushing 28 times for a career-high 175 yards and a touchdown to lead the Philadelphia Eagles to a 34-28 victory over the Minnesota Vikings Thursday night. Swift, who had just two touches in Week 1, finished with 181 total yards and a touchdown -- a 2-yard run that sealed the Eagles win and to get them to 2-0.
The backbreaking run was when Swift had a 43-yard carry with just under five minutes left in the fourth quarter to get the Eagles deep into the red zone while holding a 27-21 lead. Swift was the first-team running back in this one with Kenneth Gainwell out (ribs) and took full advantage of the opportunity. He rushed 20 times for just the second time in his career and set a career high in rushing yards.
Even though the Vikings were down 27-7 with 10:54 left in the third quarter, they refused to quit. Minnesota had two scoring drives to get back in the game, the first a 62-yard touchdown pass from Kirk Cousins to Jordan Addison to cut the lead to 27-14. After the Eagles went three-and-out early in the fourth quarter, Cousins led the Vikings on a nine-play, 86-yard drive that ended in a 10-yard catch to KJ Osborn to make it 27-21 with 7:41 left.
The first half of this slugfest was full of turnovers, the biggest one occurred in the final minute of the half with the Eagles clinging to a 10-7 lead. Justin Jefferson caught a 30-yard pass that was initially believed to be ruled down at the 1-yard line, but the Vikings wideout fumbled the ball outside the pylon -- which was ruled a touchback.
The Eagles took advantage of the missed opportunity as Jake Elliott hit a 61-yard field goal to close the half -- matching the record for the longest field goal in franchise history. Elliott also holds the record, set in Week 3 of the 2017 season against the New York Giants. He's the only player to hit two 60-plus yard field goals in Eagles history.
DeVonta Smith finished with three catches for 123 yards, including a 63-yard touchdown that put the Eagles up 27-7 midway through the third quarter. The Vikings opened the second half with a fumble on the second play from scrimmage, which the Eagles capitalized on a Jalen Hurts rushing touchdown to go up 20-7. Hurts finished with two rushing touchdowns on the night, his ninth career game with two rushing touchdowns.
Here are some immediate takeaways from Thursday's win:
Why the Eagles won
They got back to their ground-game roots. After a sluggish start reminiscent of their Week 1 outing against the Patriots, Philly leaned heavily on D'Andre Swift, who was practically nonexistent in the opener but showed burst on every touch this time around, eclipsing 100 yards by early in the fourth. Boston Scott found wide-open lanes when he chipped in, while Jalen Hurts offset an erratic start with a couple of effortless TD sneaks to round out the rushing juggernaut. The defense was imperfect but opportunistic, surrendering a deep TD to rookie Jordan Addison and allowing the Vikings to chip away at the score late but also staying in Kirk Cousins' face, forcing four fumbles and containing the all-world Justin Jefferson until late in the contest, with the "W" secured.
Why the Vikings lost
The offensive line entered the game battered, and it left in further shambles. With left tackle Christian Darrisaw in and out of the lineup and center Garrett Bradbury sidelined, Kirk Cousins struggled to go consecutive plays without feeling heat for much of the first three quarters, and Alexander Mattison offered zero support as the RB1. Justin Jefferson did his all with limited opportunities early, but even he had a fumble ahead of the goal line. Brian Flores' defense overachieved for much of the night, confusing Hurts early and occasionally taking away the deep ball, but by the end, their corners were no match for DeVonta Smith streaking downfield. While Cousins hung in there to drive a potential comeback, they never once felt fully in control of the game.
Down three, the Vikings threatened to retake a first-half lead just ahead of the break, driving 74 yards to the Eagles' 1-yard line, thanks to a perfect 30-yard floater from Cousins to Jefferson. But just as the wideout dove toward the end zone, the ball popped from his grasp and out of bounds, technically crossing the pylon to result in a touchdown. The turnover erased a critical opportunity for points on Minnesota's end, and Jake Elliott followed it up by booting a 61-yard field goal for the Birds going into halftime.
Play of the game
Give it to DeVonta Smith, who set the tone early with a leaping grab over the head of a defender, helping the Eagles get on the board first.
The Eagles (2-0) will enjoy a long break before heading to Tampa in Week 3 for a "Monday Night Football" showdown with Baker Mayfield and the Buccaneers. The Vikings (0-2) will return home and look to secure their first win of the season by welcoming Justin Herbert and the Chargers to town.
Final at the Linc:
Eagles 34, Vikings 28
This was "The D'Andre Swift Game."
Swift finished with 28 carries for 175 yards for the Eagles on a career night. The Eagles rushed for 259 yards.
The Eagles are 2-0 in consecutive seasons for the first since the 1992-1993 seasons.
D'Andre Swift has the most rushing yards for the Eagles in a game (170) since LeSean McCoy in 2013. That was the "Snow Bowl."
Swift has reached 20+ carries for the second time in his career and has a career high in rushing yards.
Mario Goodrich on Justin Jefferson isn't the matchup you want on third down. On the next play, Kirk Cousins finds KJ Osborn for a TD. Back-to-back TD drives for the Vikings and they're back in it with 7:41 left. 27-21 Eagles
This game isn't over yet folks. Vikings exposing the middle of the field and they're in Eagles territory. Kirk Cousins has 256 passing yards.
Danielle Hunter with consecutive sacks on Jalen Hurts. The all-out blitz by Brian Flores on third-and-long paid off. Vikings aren't out of this one yet. 27-14.
Thought the holding call on Rashaad Penny was questionable.
Should have been a PI called on the #Vikings on the next play that took a TD away from A.J. Brown.
A.J. Brown had a debate with Jalen Hurts on the broadcast.
He was open for the TD, but a holding by Rashaad Penny took that score away.
A.J. Brown and Jalen Hurts having a debate on the sideline. Nick Sirianni broke it up.
Coach vs. Brinson: Chiefs at Packers
Coach vs. Brinson: 49ers at Eagles
Coach vs. Brinson: Browns at Rams
Coach vs. Brinson: Colts at Titans
Coach vs. Brinson: Broncos at Texans
Coach vs. Brinson: Seahawks at Cowboys
Thursday Night Football X-Factor
Thursday Night Football: Seahawks at Cowboys
Cowboys Sit At 8-3, Perfect 5-0 At Home
Seahawks Chances Without Ken Walker III
Jets Opening 21-Day Practice Window For Aaron Rodgers
Week 13 NFL Picks: Colts at Titans
Week 13 NFL Picks: Seahawks at Cowboys
Week 13 NFL Picks: Chiefs at Packers
Week 13 NFL Picks: Bengals at Jaguars
Jets Open Aaron Rodgers Practice Window
Week 13 NFL Picks: Panthers at Buccaneers
Week 13 NFL Picks: 49ers at Eagles
Week 13 NFL Picks: Browns at Rams
Best Bet For Week 13 In NFL