Eagles soar past Packers, 31-9

For as good as the Green Bay Packers played in the first half, they were every bit as bad in the second half Monday against the Philadelphia Eagles. The Eagles broke the game open in the third quarter and rolled past the mistake-prone Packers 31-9 at Lincoln Financial Field.

The Eagles scored 24 unanswered points between the third and fourth quarters to overcome a 9-7 halftime deficit and blow past the Green Bay Packers, 31-9, on ESPN's Monday Night Football. It was Philadelphia's fifth straight win over the Packers in Philadelphia, including the playoffs, since 2003.

Green Bay's secondary, which held its own against the red-hot Donovan McNabb in the first half, broke down in the second half. McNabb threw touchdown passes of 45 and 30 yards to wide receiver Greg Lewis, then ran 15 yards for another score with 12:41 left in the game for a 31-9 lead.

The Eagles (3-1) scored 21 points off of three Packers turnovers in the game, and the Packers (1-3) never got into the end zone.

"We only played one half," said Packers coach Mike McCarthy. "We come in here at halftime winning 9-7, then go back out and we're losing 31-9. We've got to overcome the momentum swings."

McNabb finished the game by completing 16 of 30 passes for 288 yards. The 6-foot-2, 240-pound quarterback also gashed the Packers' defense for 47 yards rushing on five carries.

When McNabb wasn't running, he was picking on cornerback Ahmad Carroll, who was beaten badly by Lewis. The receiver's only two catches in the game were for touchdowns. Lewis' second touchdown of the game was set up by Carroll's 14-yard pass interference penalty on wide receiver Reggie Brown.

"They went after him," said McCarthy. "That's a position that we take a lot of pride in. It's a big play opportunity. They converted on it and we didn't."

Between the third and fourth quarters, the Eagles scored 21 points on nine plays sandwiched around two Brett Favre interceptions.

Favre finished with 205 yards passing, completing 22 of 44 attempts, before leaving with a "stinger" in the fourth quarter. Favre played well in the first half, but made some poor decisions in the second half and didn't get a lot of help from his receivers, who dropped a handful of passes.

McNabb used his legs in the third quarter to ignite the offense, which was without injured running back Brian Westbrook (knee), and led the Eagles to their third victory by a double-digit margin.

On the opening possession of the third quarter, McNabb twice kept the drive going by running for first downs on third-and-10. He got 14 yards on his first dash and juked for 12 more to the Packers' 42 on the second one.

David Akers then kicked a 40-yard field goal to give the Eagles a 10-9 lead, and they never looked back.

Running back Vernand Morency, starting in place of the injured Ahman Green (hamstring), finished with 99 yards rushing on 26 carries.

Kicker Dave Rayner made field goals from 54 and 46 yards to lead the Packers to a 9-7 halftime lead. Rayner's 54-yarder, with plenty of distance midway through the second quarter, tied a team record set by Chris Jacke (Jan. 2, 1994, at Detroit) and Ryan Longwell (Dec. 16, 2001, at Tennessee).

Rayner's 46-yard field goal gave the Packers a 9-7 lead with 1:45 left in the half. A 12-yard pass from Favre to Koren Robinson converted a third and 5, and a 15-yard catch by Bubba Franks followed by a 10-yard run by Morency got the Packers into scoring range.

The Eagles got their only touchdown of the half two plays after Green Bay committed its only turnover of the half. Morency's fumble on a handoff from Favre gave the Eagles the ball at Green Bay's 3. McNabb plowed into the end zone on a keeper for a 7-3 lead.

Ironically, the Packers forced Correll Buckhalter to fumble the ball away for the second time in the half inside the 5, recovering on the 3. Two plays later, Morency mishandled a handoff, allowing the Eagles to recover the ball on the 6.

Morency rushed 12 times for 50 yards in the first half and came close to breaking a few runs for big gains.

The Packers squandered a chance to score a touchdown early in the game and had to settle for Rayner's 23-yard field goal and a 3-0 lead. Favre was incomplete on three straight passes into the end zone, but Donald Driver dropped what could have easily been a touchdown catch on a short slant from Favre on second down. A 22-yard reception by Greg Jennings started the drive, and a roughing-the-passer penalty on Darwin Walker gave Green Bay a first-and-goal on the 6.

The Eagles responded with a 72-yard drive, but McNabb and Buckhalter fumbled a handoff exchange on first-and-goal at the 2. Linebacker Nick Barnett recovered for the Packers to keep the Eagles scoreless.

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