Somehow, the 8-5 Eagles, winners of five consecutive and leaders of the NFC East, were dispatched 48-30 by the Adrian Peterson-less Vikings on Sunday afternoon. The Philly defense surrendered more points than it had during its last two games combined to a team that hadn't scored 40 points all season. Nick Foles threw just his second pick of 2013. LeSean McCoy's 38-yard rushing day was his worst of the year.
On a day when the Dallas Cowboys blew a 23-point halftime lead in spectacular fashion, the Eagles failed to convert a golden opportunity to increase their lead in the division race. The one positive, writes Brandon Lee Gowton of Bleeding Green Nation, is that the loss will hopefully refocus the team down the stretch.
This loss is a splash of cold water on the collective face of the team. It's a reality check. A wake-up call. In recent weeks, the Eagles proved they can play well. Some of the success they generated is sustainable and replicable. But what Sunday's loss proved is that the Eagles still have a long way to go. They are still a team that lacks talent in key areas, among other issues. They are still a team in transition and only a year removed from a poor 4-12 record.
In fairness, the Vikings have played better than their 4-9-1 record suggests this season. But while Minnesota fans certainly enjoyed picking up the unexpected win, the victory removes the team from the running for the top pick in 2014.
Christopher Gates at Daily Norseman breaks down the details:
The Houston Texans, who currently sit in position to have the No. 1 overall pick, lost their twelfth straight game on Sunday to fall to 2-12. That means that, even if the Texans win their final two games (not likely, considering that they have the Denver Broncos on tap this weekend) and the Vikings lose their games against the Cincinnati Bengals and the Detroit Lions, they still would not be able to leapfrog the Texans for the top overall pick. Such a scenario would have the Texans at 4-12 and the Vikings at 4-11-1, meaning the Texans would still be ahead of the Vikings.