Niners' Rally Stopped Short In Birds' Win

The 49'ers tried to stage a Giants' style comeback, but fell short as the Eagles turned back the assualt to hang on for a 38-24 road win. The win gives the Eagles a 2-1 start to the season.

Suddenly, Brian Westbrook doesn't seem so vulnerable anymore. The oft-injured running back has shown pretty good durability in the early going and put up impressive numbers, including a career-high 71 yard touchdown run in the Eagles' 38-24 win over San Francisco. Westbrook finished the day with 117 yards rushing - the fourth 100 yard rushing day of his career - and added another 47 yards in receiving yards. Westbrook also tallied three touchdowns on the day to pace the Eagles' offense.

With Donte Stallworth inactive, nursing a sore hamstring, Reggie Brown stepped up and took an increased role. On the opening play, the Eagles showed perfect execution on a flea-flicker pass to Brown covering 50 yards. It looked at that point like the Eagles would just run away with things as they would go on to open up a 24-3 halftime lead. When all was said and done, Brown caught five passes for 106 yards on the day.

Donovan McNabb was 18-for-33 for 296 yards passing and two touchdowns.

The Eagles defense let the Niners climb back into the game, just as they did with the Giants last week. This week though, they collected themselves in time to thwart the comeback. San Francisco might have been able to force a different outcome, if not for a key fumble on the Eagles' two yard line in the third quarter. Brian Dawkins knocked the ball out of Frank Gore's hands and Mike Patterson scooped it up and rambled 98 yards for the touchdown. Had Gore not coughed up the ball and gotten into the end zone, things would have been much dicier for the Eagles.

Former Penn Stater Michael Robinson had two rushing touchdowns for San Francisco, including one on the first play of the fourth quarter to cut the Eagles' lead to 31-17. Less than three minutes later, Westbrook would score on an eight yard run to cap off a five-play, 80 yard scoring drive for the Eagles, giving them more command of the game.

The Eagles are 2-1 heading into next week's game against Green Bay. The Packers won their first game of the season Sunday, beating the winless Detroit Lions 31-24.


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