Somehow it happened again.
An Eagles comeback. A last-minute drive.
The Eagles kicker drilled a 43-yard field goal with 22 seconds remaining, and Philadelphia once again stunned the Giants, 25-22, Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field.
There will be no miracle playoff run this season. There was just another devastating loss in what was a very winnable game.
Last September, Elliott first broke the Giants’ hearts when he kicked a 61-yard field goal to beat them on the final play of the game at the Linc.
On Sunday, the Giants’ meltdown began just before halftime in a game they had dominated. They led 19-3 with 4:06 remaining in the second quarter.
“We just didn’t finish this game,” Saquon Barkley said.
How right he was.
Somehow the coaching staff stopped giving the ball to Barkley, who had a special first half in what has become a special first season for the rookie.
“Here’s the story of the second half: We weren’t making the yards we needed on the plays we called and we had penalties that knocked us off,” Giants coach Pat Shurmur told reporters after the game.
The first domino to fall came when Eli Manning was intercepted with just 4 seconds remaining in the half. Malcolm Jenkins caught Manning’s ill-advised pass into double coverage — intended for Odell Beckham Jr. — at the Eagles’ 2.
“We’re very close, and we were a play or two away today,” Manning said. “We just didn’t make them.”
But the Giants held a 19-11 lead at the intermission.
However it did not end there. The Eagles would score 19 unanswered points and took a 22-19 lead with 10:11 remaining in the game. The Giants would pull even.
But then came Elliott’s second dagger in two seasons.
It ruined what was a dominant first half for Barkley (94 rushing yards and six receptions for 37 yards). He finished with 101 rushing yards (on 13 carries) and 41 receiving yards on seven receptions. He had a 13-yard touchdown reception in the first quarter and a 51-yard touchdown run in the second.
With that big scoring run, he broke Beckham’s franchise record for the most yards from scrimmage (1,340) by a Giants rookie.
The Giants had a total of three 50-yard-plus touchdown runs in the previous 10 seasons. Barkley already has three in 2018, becoming the first rookie since Adrian Peterson (2007) to do so.
But Elliott’s game-winning kick all but killed the Giants’ (3-8) slim playoff hopes and snapped their two-game winning streak.
After 346 yards in the first half, the Giants struggled in the second half. Their first 11 plays after halftime netted -7 yards. Worse, the coaching staff largely abandoned the run.
It allowed the Eagles to climb back into the game.
The Giants have lost nine of their past 10 games to the Eagles, including five straight. They haven’t beaten the Eagles since Nov. 6, 2016, 28-23.
They haven’t won in Philadelphia since 2013.
In October, the Eagles pummeled the Giants, 34-13.
Moments that mattered
DECIDING PLAY: The game’s decisive moment came on the Eagles’ final drive, when coach Doug Pederson decided to go for it on fourth-and-1 from the Giants’ 42 with 2:39 remaining. Carson Wentz hit a wide open Nelson Agholor for a 12-yard pass. It set up Elliott’s heroics.
LATE PUSH: The Eagles didn’t take their first lead until 10:11 remaining in the game. Josh Adams’ 1-yard touchdown run and two-point conversion run gave them a 22-19 lead.
REST TIME?: Barkley stayed on the sideline for the Giants’ second drive of the third quarter. He returned for the Giants’ next possession.
OBJ MIA: Beckham remained in the locker room for the Giants’ first drive of the second half while receiving an IV to combat his on-going dehydration issues. He rejoined the team before its second drive of the third.
CENTURY MARK: Beckham did surpass the 1,000-yard receiving mark for the fourth time in his career.
BATTERED BIRDS: The Eagles secondary has been decimated by injury, and Sunday, Manning and Co. made them pay for a half. S Rodney McLeod and CB Ronald Darby are out for the season. Meanwhile, CBs Sidney Jones and Jalen Mills were inactive Sunday due to injury, as was S Avonte Maddox.
The Eagles’ cornerbacks were Rasul Douglas, Chandon Sullivan, De’Vante Bausby and Cre’von LeBlanc. Only Douglas was on the active roster at the beginning of the season.
Then Sullivan was injured in the third quarter.
FAST START: The Giants uncharacteristically scored on their opening drive as well as their next three possessions.
They took a 6-0 lead 4:22 into the game, thanks mostly to the legs of Barkley and Wayne Gallman. Barkley took a Manning shovel pass 13 yards untouched for a touchdown. The Giants failed to convert the two-point via an incomplete pass. But they added a 25-yard Aldrick Rosas field goal on their next drive for a 9-0 lead with 3:13 remaining in the first quarter. And Rosas added a 51-yard field goal on the Giants’ third possession to give them a 12-0 lead with 9:34 remaining in the first half.
Barkley then made it 19-3 with 4:06 remaining in the half when he broke his 51-yard touchdown run.
DEAD-EYE: Rosas hit three field goals and is 23-of-24 this season. He’s also a perfect 18-of-18 on extra points.
BRING IT BACK: Adams broke what would have been a 52-yard touchdown run on the Eagles’ first drive. But it was called back on a Jason Kelce holding penalty.
TE Evan Engram injured his hamstring during pregame warmups and did not play.
PR Quadree Henderson suffered a shoulder/burner injury returning a punt on the final play of the first quarter. He did not return. Henderson stood on the sideline in the second half with his left arm in a sling. Antonio Hamilton and Beckham filled in.
The Giants host the NFC North-leading Chicago Bears (8-3) and its third-ranked defense (316.1 yards allowed per game) next Sunday. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. ET. Watch out, Eli. The Bears were tied for third in the NFL in sacks (34) before today’s slate of games.