For those who did not have the fortune of watching this unfold on the Red Zone Channel Sunday, NFL-N is re-airing the entire game tonight. It’s interesting, though, that the media is dubbing this one “Miracle in the Meadowlands II”, the original being in 1978, when in fact number II came 10 years and one day after the original.
Most of us are familiar with the original “Miracle in the Meadowlands” in 1978 when Joe Pisarcek fumbled the handoff, Herman Edwards took the ball and ran it into the endzone to steal a 19-17 victory. The Eagles made the playoffs that year as a wild card team and the Giants started cleaning house.
“Miracle II” occurred 10 years and one day after the first when the Eagles field goal attempt in overtime was blocked by the Giants, but Clyde Simmons of the Eagles grabbed the ball and ran it in 15 yards for the touchdown that ended the game. Both the Eagles and Giants finished 10-6 that year; the Eagles won the East on the sweep while the Giants watched the playoffs from their homes.
On Sunday, the Eagles found themselves down 21 points with half a quarter remaining but managed to tie the game just after the two-minute warning; an onside kick after the first of the three scores helped. With the Giants going three and out and not able to run the clock out completely to force overtime, everyone expected a punt to go out of bounds or well covered to have the Eagles call for a fair catch and go to overtime.
The Eagles’ DeSean Jackson took the punt, did not call for a fair catch, lost the ball for a split second then ran into the NFL history books. I watched it unfold live on Red Zone Channel and needed a few seconds to realize that it actually happened, much the same way as those who watched the original “Miracle” unfold in 1978.
And history may very well repeat itself. With the win, the Eagles are one win (or a Giants loss) away from clinching the East. Next weekend, the Eagles host the Vikings (without Favre, it would appear) while the Giants play at the Packers. The Vikings are out of the playoffs while the Packers are still fighting for a playoff spot. A Packer victory gives them the tiebreaker over the Giants and with at least two playoff teams coming from the NFC South, the Giants may very well miss the playoffs because of another Eagles “Miracle”.