Herm Edwards goes back to the future watching Eagles' comeback win
Herman Edwards had a great day, all from the comforts of his couch. Earlier Sunday, the former Eagles cornerback associated with the 1978 Eagles-Giants "Miracle at the Meadowlands," saw the ever-popular Coors Light commercial spoof of his "You play to win the game" postgame press conference when he was coach of the Jets.
Herman Edwards had a great day, all from the comforts of his couch.
Earlier Sunday, the former Eagles cornerback associated with the 1978 Eagles-Giants "Miracle at the Meadowlands," saw the ever-popular Coors Light commercial spoof of his "You play to win the game" postgame press conference when he was coach of the Jets.
Then, after DeSean Jackson and his 65-yard dash down the right sideline after a muffed punt evolved into a game-winning touchdown, it immediately drew comparisons to Edwards' 26-yard return of a Joe Pisarcik botched handoff. Images from that historic play graced TV screens repeatedly.
"I saw myself on that Coors commercial and thought that was funny," Edwards told the Daily News. "But later, I saw [Fox] flash the highlight of that play. I haven't played football in 30 years and I am making the screen on an NFL Sunday twice. Heck, man, I'm having a great day."
But Edwards found few similarities between his game-winner and Jackson's return, which is believed to be the only game-winning punt return as time expired in NFL history, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
"His was different in the sense that he had to make people miss," said Edwards. "All I had to do was pick it up on the hop and run my heart out. It was also great because a lot of people don't know this but when a return man bobbles the punt, a lot of the time coverage guys stop to see what evolves. It looked like that happened in this case and DeSean took full advantage."
Edwards believes that like his "Miracle," Jackson's return will become a momentum-changing moment. Despite losing two of their last four, at Minnesota (28-27) and to Dallas (31-13), the 1978 Eagles defeated the Giants at Veterans Stadium, 20-3, in the last game of the regular season en route to their first playoff appearance since 1960.
"We were a team trying to figure how to win and that win gave us some energy," Edwards said. "It compelled us to go into the playoffs that year, remain competitive and later make our first Super Bowl [against the Oakland Raiders in January 1981]. Now this team can play for homefield advantage, and you get that week off and that'll give a lot of banged-up guys much needed rest, which is so vital at this time of the year."
A total of 15 Eagles touchdowns have been scored at the Meadowlands resulting from either kick returns, fumble recoveries, interceptions or blocked field goals. In addition to the scores by Jackson and Edwards, perhaps the two most memorable involve defensive end Clyde Simmons and his 15-yard blocked field goal return in a 23-17 overtime win on Nov. 20, 1988, and Brian Westbrook's 84-yard fourth-quarter punt return on Oct. 19, 2003, that embarrassed Marcellus Rivers, nearly broke the clipboard of Giants special-teams coach Bruce Read, but, more importantly, supplied the Eagles with a 14-10 win.
Edwards believes that while much of the credit is going to Jackson, the eight-play, 88-yard drive orchestrated by Eagles quarterback Michael Vick to tie yesterday's game at 31 was the catalyst. Vick scrambled for 55 yards and passed for 33 in just 1 minute, 45 seconds.
"This game looked out of reach and he gave them some life," Edwards said of Vick. "He figured the game out; when this guy wants to take off and run, he is going to run and run unscripted plays that work. I like this [Eagles] team, they have a lot of young players and with this much youth it wasn't expected for them to be this good. But with this many weapons, you are always in the game."