Reid: Eagles Played One Heck of A Game

Eagles coach Andy Reid was a master of understatement in his postgame press conference after his Eagles almost managed to pull of a historic victory over the Patriots Sunday Night. Reid said his team played a heck of a football game. Really, it was much better than that as Phillly fell 28-31 to the Pats.

For the second straight year, the Eagles find themselves with a 5-6 record after 11 games. They'd love to repeat their homestretch performance of last season when they won their final five games and captured their fifth NFC East title in six years.

Winning another division title doesn't appear to be in the cards since they find themselves an insurmountable five games behind the 10-1 Dallas Cowboys. But they still are in the hunt for a wild card spot after giving the undefeated New England Patriots all they could handle in a 31-28 loss.

"We played a heck of a football team, and I think we are a heck of a football team," Eagles coach Andy Reid said after the loss to the Patriots. "We are getting guys back healthy and are playing the way that we are supposed to play.

"When we come into a game like this, we expect to win the game. If you come up short, you don't feel good about it. But at the same time, there were some great efforts out there. We just came up a little (short). Three points, man. The Patriots and three points are killing me."

Reid was referring to his team's 24-21 loss to the Patriots three years ago in Super Bowl XXXIX.

The Eagles rallied last year behind backup quarterback Jeff Garcia, who replaced injured Donovan McNabb, who tore his ACL in mid-November. McNabb was absent again Sunday, nursing an ankle sprain and a jammed thumb.

His replacement, A.J. Feeley, completed 27 of 42 passes for 345 yards and three touchdowns, but also three interceptions, including one early in the first quarter that Patriots cornerback Asante Samuel returned for a touchdown.

McNabb is expected to be able to play Sunday against Seattle, and Reid said there will be no quarterback controversy. If McNabb is healthy, McNabb will start.

"Yes," Reid said when asked if McNabb would start against the Seahawks, assuming his ankle and thumb have healed.

McNabb has been inconsistent this season as he has battled back from last year's knee injury. He was just starting to get his mobility back when he injured the ankle two weeks ago against the Miami Dolphins.

Feeley, who was making just his 14th career start, threw an interception on the Eagles' third play from scrimmage that Samuel returned for a touchdown.

He recovered nicely and ended up completing 27 of 42 passes for 345 yards and three touchdowns. But he had three interceptions, including another killer late in the fourth quarter after the Eagles, trailing by three, had driven to the New England 29-yard line. He lobbed a pass down the sideline for wide receiver Kevin Curtis that also was picked off by Samuel.

"It was disappointing to go out there and be so close and to come up short like that," Feeley said. "Personally, I take it on my back for the outcome. I can't put myself or our team in situations like that and turn the ball over. That's the bottom line."

The Eagles probably have to win four of their remaining five games to have a shot at a wild card spot. It's doable, but it's difficult. They've got the NFC West-leading Seattle Seahawks at home Sunday, then another home game against the 7-4 New York Giants, who already have beaten the Eagles once this season.

Then they got on the road for a pair of difficult back-to-back games against the Cowboys and the New Orleans Saints, before finishing the regular-season at home against Buffalo.

"We came in here (to New England) and played a great football team and didn't get it done," said center Jamaal Jackson. "But we have to keep working."

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