PHILADELPHIA — The Giants tried everything to upset the Eagles, playing only their best talent.
Promoted from the practice squad to make his first career start, quarterback Davis Webb led a boring lineup of second- and third-stringers that carried the Eagles to the limit Sunday before falling 22-16 at Lincoln Financial Field. The Eagles needed a win and a bye to clinch the No. 1 seed in the NFC playoffs.
“We got them in four quarters,” said Webb, who engineered a three-scoring drive to reverse a 16-0 deficit in the second half. “First of all, I wanted to get off to a better start, and secondly, the offense, but it was a fun second half — and it’s something I’ll never forget.”
Relegated to the No. 6 seed in the playoffs, the Giants had just three of their 22 starters playing: right tackle Evan Neal, cornerback Nick McCood and inside linebacker Landon Collins. It was a hit-and-miss formula, but Webb circled back and forth when the backup linebackers blocking him couldn’t hold up or the mostly special teams catching his passes couldn’t come apart.
The Giants trailed 19-3 when Webb dropped his shoulder and brought Reid Blackenship to the line of scrimmage on a 14-yard shotgun snap. The former third-round pick, once considered Eli Manning’s heir apparent, looked like he was up against a brick wall for his first career touchdown — or like someone who waited five years and changed teams three times in a roundabout way. may or may not come again.
“Watch out,” Webb said. “There were predetermined decisions: you have to go in or get close to it. When the opportunity arises, wait and take it.”
The game seemed to strengthen the sideline.
“I thought it was going to go down,” Nick Gates said. “It was great to see him get into the end zone, especially like that. Everyone was excited, jumping, shouting and calling for him. “He’s a good teammate, so everybody wants to be a good teammate.”
The Giants were shorthanded but creative, as Daboll called on his competitiveness on special teams for two ploys — a field goal fake and an onside kick to start the second half, both of which failed — and Webb delivered. . developed.
The defense forced five tackles from Jake Elliott as the Eagles’ high-powered offense returned Dane Belton from a shoulder injury to pack the end zone after missing two games with MVP candidate Jalen Hurts. Boston Scott made it 10 of his impressive total of 17 career catches against the Giants with an 8-yarder.
Webb, who gave up his chance to be the Bills’ quarterback in the offseason, completed 23 of 40 for 168 yards without a turnover and threw his first career touchdown pass to Kenny Holladay, who scored his first touchdown in 33 games since signing. $72 million free agent contract. Golladay’s acrobatic layup tied the score at six with 1:38 remaining, but the Giants were unable to recover the second down.
“Especially for Webb, it felt good to make a play and get a touchdown,” Golladay said.
Daboll clenched his fists after momentum-changing plays because the game was more important than his personnel strategy. The reserves haven’t fared any worse than the Giants usually do against the Eagles, losing 24 times in their last 30 meetings, including a 48-22 loss on Dec. 48 and nine in Philly. defeat
“It’s the NFL, so you trust the guys on your team,” Daboll said. “Of course, I believe in all the guys we have. You don’t play walk-on. You are playing people who have earned the right to be on a team, compete and play.