After Sam Bradford left the Eagles' Week 10 game with a shoulder injury and concussion, the team lost the first of three consecutive games. Since his return against New England, Philadelphia has recorded back-to-back victories following Sunday's 23-20 win over the Buffalo Bills.
Bradford didn't have his best performance of the season vs. the Bills, going 23-of-38 for 247 yards with one touchdown, an interception and a 77.4 rating. However, his teammates were the first to say that sometimes leadership and determination outweigh the statistics.
"I've spent a lot of time around Sam," wide receiver Jordan Matthews said. "He's a leader to me whether he says anything or not, but the way his demeanor is, he's very calm and very silent. When he opens his mouth, you better listen because this guy knows what he's talking about.
"Sam's been through more than anybody in this locker room as far as adversity, probably even a lot of guys in the NFL. When he says something like, 'We need to get this win and come out firing on all cylinders,' he means that. There's a passion behind that. We definitely feed off that."
In the signal-caller's past three starts, Bradford had been performing increasingly better compared to the way he began the season. He recorded an average passer rating of 106.5 and a completion percentage of 68.2 percent over that span and before today's game he hadn't thrown a pick since Week 7 at Carolina.
Although his completion percentage was lower on Sunday (60.5 percent), the quarterback still made his passes count. Bradford's longest throw of the game came on a 53-yard touchdown to Nelson Agholor, and throughout the entirety of the game he looked calm, collected and confident.
"I feel like the past couple weeks or whatever it's been, I've gotten a lot more comfortable with what we're doing," Bradford said. "I think everyone else has too. It's still not perfect. There are still some things we need to correct, but it seems to be going in the right direction right now.
"I still think there are some things we can do better. We can perform at a higher level. Obviously, we're still not great out there, but I think this is what I envisioned as far as us winning as a team. What we've been able to do the past two weeks, to put two wins together, I think that's kind of what everyone was really looking to see."
Clearly, the quarterback was a big part of the reason the Eagles were able to leave Lincoln Financial Field on Sunday with a much-needed win and now, he and the rest of the team know the season lies in their hands.
They determine their own fate in this NFC East race. Sunday's win was a step in the right direction.
"Obviously, you start the year the way we did and kind of dig ourselves in a hole, it was unlikely that we would be in this position this late in the year," the quarterback said. "But for us to, like you said to control our own destiny where we don't have to depend on anyone else and if we take care of our business we'll end up where we want to be, that's all you can ask for."
The Eagles returned to Lincoln Financial Field to face the Buffalo Bills in their first of three home games in December. View the full gallery here...