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Travis Fulgham connects with Carson Wentz as one of the Eagles’ few bright spots vs. Steelers

Fulgham emerged as the team’s best receiving threat after his breakout performance Sunday at Heinz Field.

Eagles wide receiver Travis Fulgham catches the football past Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Mike Hilton (left) and free safety Minkah Fitzpatrick during the third quarter of Sunday's 38-29 loss.
Eagles wide receiver Travis Fulgham catches the football past Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Mike Hilton (left) and free safety Minkah Fitzpatrick during the third quarter of Sunday's 38-29 loss.Read moreYONG KIM / Staff Photographer

PITTSBURGH — Travis Fulgham caught the second touchdown pass of his career on Sunday and promptly hurled the ball as high into the air as he could.

The new Eagles receiver’s chemistry with Carson Wentz during the 38-29 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers was one of the only bright spots on an offense playing with more backups than expected starters these days. One week after catching a 42-yard pass for the go-ahead touchdown in the win against the San Francisco 49ers, Fulgham had 10 catches for 152 yards, a touchdown, and at least one regret: Not being more mindful before throwing the ball into the stands on his score.

» READ MORE: Eagles rally behind Travis Fulgham but fall short in a 38-29 loss to the Steelers

“I probably should have kept that touchdown ball,” Fulgham said. “My family was there, mom, dad, and my sister. But, yeah, I probably should have saved that ball and gave it to them.”

If Fulgham continues to play the way he has in the last two weeks, he’ll have a chance to make up for the lost ball in due time. He has emerged as the Eagles’ best receiving threat for the time being after his breakout performance at Heinz Field. Fulgham made a handful of impressive contested catches, repeatedly found the soft spot in the Steelers' zone coverages, and gave the Eagles a pivotal score in the fourth quarter for the second week in a row.

» READ MORE: Grading the Eagles' performance in Sunday’s 38-29 loss to the Steelers

Fulgham’s quick ascension up the Eagles' depth chart started when he was promoted from the practice squad the day before the Niners game because of a rash of injuries at the position. Since then, he has 12 catches for a team-high 209 yards and two touchdowns, which ties him with Greg Ward among receivers.

“First of all, he’s a beast,” Wentz said. “I mean, he showed up today and showed really last week that the two big plays he had, they weren’t a fluke. The kid’s a baller, he made a lot of big plays and I was really proud of him and pumped for him.”

Fulgham had a game-high 13 targets, remarkable considering Steelers rookie receiver Chase Claypool had only 11 in a four-touchdown performance. Greg Ward and Zach Ertz tied the next-highest on the team with six apiece.

» READ MORE: Eagles-Steelers Up-Down Drill: Jim Schwartz gets exposed again

Even when the Eagles get Jalen Reagor, DeSean Jackson, and Alshon Jeffery back from injury, Fulgham has carved out a role for himself. Coach Doug Pederson alluded to as much after the game, saying Fulgham is capable of being a go-to receiver moving forward.

“I think he has the skill and ability,” Pederson said. “It was great to see again today. It’s just something that we’ve gotta sustain each week. He had the big catch out in San Francisco and he had some big catches today. It’s something that we have to continue to build on. ... I know our quarterback feels comfortable with him. They work extremely hard during the week, and it showed today."

The Eagles added Fulgham to the practice squad after claiming him off waivers on Aug. 20. He had been waived by both the Detroit Lions and Green Bay Packers earlier in training camp. He spent his rookie season with the Lions, who took him in the sixth round of the 2019 draft out of Old Dominion.

Even though he’s had limited time in the Eagles' offense, Fulgham and Wentz have developed a connection.

“Whenever we have free time before, during practice, or after practice, we’re working on it, working on our chemistry,” Fulgham said. “Carson’s a great quarterback, he’s putting the ball on the money, and I’m just coming up with the play.”