The Eagles were fresh off a Monday night thumping of Washington, suddenly becoming the latest NFC favorite among the national media. The Giants had dropped a home game to lowly Dallas, and talk of yet another second-half swoon bubbled in New York. So, of course, the two waged a tense battle, filled with drama. The Eagles failed to capitalize on some early opportunities, and their 16-3 halftime lead didn't feel safe. It wasn't. Nothing new to this rivalry, the Giants rallied to take a 17-16 lead. The Eagles bounced back, regaining command of the game with a huge play, the focus of our Anatomy of a Play for Week 11: LeSean McCoy's 50-yard touchdown run on fourth-and-1.
Fumbles that weren't, fumbles that shouldn't have been, challenged calls, reversals, and big plays. Just another ho-hum installment in this storied rivalry. Where does the latest chapter rank in the history books? To make this fair (who wants to read another list that ends with the Miracle at the Meadowlands being ranked No. 1?), we'll look back at just the last decade between these NFC East foes, and rank the top 10 regular-season games between the Eagles and Giants.
10. Dec. 11, 2005: Giants 26, Eagles 23 (OT)
9. Dec. 7, 2008: Eagles 20, Giants 14
Two weeks after being benched at halftime, Donovan McNabb led the Eagles to a win and kept their playoff hopes alive. The Giants were playing their first game without Plaxico Burress following his brush with the law. The Eagles took a 10-0 lead in the first half. On the last play before halftime, David Akers' field goal attempt was blocked and returned for a touchdown by Kevin Dockery. Instead of a 13-0 advantage, the Eagles' lead was just 10-7. But the normally pass-happy Eagles ran the ball 41 times for 144 yards on their way to finishing off the win.
8. Nov. 21, 2010: Eagles 27, Giants 17
7. Nov. 9, 2008: Giants 36, Eagles 31
The defending Super Bowl champs improved to 8-1 on the season with a controversial win. Brandon Jacobs goal-line fumble was ruled a touchdown, and Eli Manning completed a critical third-and-10 pass to Kevin Boss, where it appeared he had crossed the line of scrimmage before making the pass. Replay reversed the call. The Eagles had the ball on their own 45-yard line with 1:55 left, but Chase Blackburn stopped Brian Westbrook on fourth-and-1 to seal the victory.
6. Dec. 17, 2006: Eagles 36, Giants 22
5. Dec. 30, 2001: Eagles 24, Giants 21
The Eagles clinched their first division title since 1988 by scoring 17 fourth-quarter points in a comeback victory. David Akers' field goal with seven seconds left broke the tie, and had Eagles fans dancing in the aisles. But the division crown wouldn't come without one last scare. On the game's final play, Ron Dixon took a lateral from Barber and raced all the way to the Eagles' 4-yard line before finally being pushed out of bounds by Damon Moore.
4. Dec. 13, 2009: Eagles 45, Giants 38
The Eagles bid farewell to Giants Stadium in grand fashion. The Giants fought back from a 30-17 deficit, eventually taking a one-point lead on a 61-yard touchdown pass from Eli Manning to Domenik Hixon. One play later, Donovan McNabb hit DeSean Jackson on a 60-yard touchdown pass. It gave the Eagles a lead they would not give back.
3. Dec. 28, 2002: Giants 10, Eagles 7 (OT)
On the final Sunday of the regular season, both teams were desperate for a win. The Eagles needed to secure homefield advantage, the Giants needed to secure a wild-card berth. With the game tied 7-7 in the fourth quarter, Barber fumbled at his own 26-yard line. But Akers missed a 35-yard field goal, and the game went to overtime, where Shaun Williams intercepted an A.J. Feeley pass to set up Matt Bryant for the winning kick.
2. Sept. 17, 2006: Giants 30, Eagles 24 (OT)
It was an epic comeback for the Giants on a hot September day in Philadelphia. Trailing by 17 points, New York's Tim Carter recovered a Burress fumble in the end zone for a Giants touchdown. Then, a Westbrook fumble led to Manning's 22-yard touchdown pass to Amani Toomer. Jay Feely forced overtime with a 35-yard field goal with seven seconds to play in regulation, aided by a 15-yard penalty on Trent Cole for kicking a New York player. The comeback was completed in overtime when Manning hit Burress on a 31 yard fade pass for the win.
1. Oct. 19, 2003: Eagles 14, Giants 10
The Eagles were desperate for a win, having gotten off to a 2-3 start. They were completely outplayed by the Giants, who outgained Philadelphia 339-134 in total yards, and had more than a 10-minute edge in time of possession. But thanks to two red-zone turnovers by New York, the Eagles were still in the game. With fewer than two minutes to go, Giants punter Jeff Feagles made the mistake of punting to Westbrook, who returned the ball 84 yards for the winning score, saving the Eagles' season in the process.
Be sure to mark Dec. 16 on your calendar. That's the next time these two teams get together.