The Philadelphia Eagles relied on the Philly Special to help set up a scoring drive against the Falcons Thursday night. While it looked like the Philly Special, its inspiration was drawn from the Patriots failed attempt in the Super Bowl.
The Philly Special will go down in NFL lore as one of the most iconic play calls in NFL history. The call, alongside with the circumstances of the game at the time, should make the play stand the test of time.
The Eagles brought back the feeling of that magic moment Thursday night against the Atlanta Falcons when wide receiver Nelson Agholor, completed a trick pass to Nick Foles for a first down. The play would help spark the Eagles, and they would score on the ensuing drive. While the play was named “Philly Philly” just as head coach Doug Pederson referred to it in Super Bowl LII, Pederson disclosed that they took the play straight from the Patriots failed attempt against them in February. The team only ran the play once in practice.
While the name was decidedly Philadelphia, the play itself came straight from the Eagles’ opponent in Super Bowl LII. It was a copy of the same play that the New England Patriots ran against them when a pass intended for Tom Brady caromed off his fingertips harmlessly for an incompletion.
“That’s where we got it from,” Pederson said. “We just put different people in the game. They were in (one running back, one tight end) personnel. We were in (one running back, two tight ends).”
Just as the famous trick play would spark the Eagles against the Patriots in February, the variation of that trick play would give the Eagles a much-needed lift to prevail over the Falcons. The Eagles, in the end, won sloppily and unimpressively. But just as we saw in the past Super Bowl, sometimes trick plays are the spark needed to get a team out of a rut, and into a win.