Wide receiver Riley Cooper wasn't going to look for the referees to bail him out.
After Cooper caught an 11-yard pass from Michael Vick off of a slant pattern with 44 seconds left in the game to get a first down at the Packers' 27-yard line, the rookie wide receiver thought that Vick would spike the ball to stop the clock. The Eagles trailed by five points and had no timeouts remaining.
Cooper knew that the next play was an "all-go" where all four receivers ran straight vertical routes down the field. Cooper, lined up to the far left, had a one-on-one matchup against cornerback Tramon Williams with no safety help over the top. Vick tried to exploit the matchup and threw the ball into the end zone. Vick didn't put enough air under the ball and after it looked like Williams shoved Cooper he was able to pluck the ball and end the game.
"I don't know if he pushed me or not. There was contact. No excuses," Cooper said. "I don't even know if I touched the guy when he was on the ground. As soon as I saw him come down with it, I said that's it. Game over. Season's over. That's it. We're done for the rest of the year. It's a bad feeling."
Vick admitted that he got "greedy" on the play.
"The last play we had four verticals and I just took a shot at the end zone," Vick said. "I could have checked it down to the back and I feel like I got greedy and took at shot at the end zone and didn't throw the right ball I wanted to throw and then it got picked off."
Wide receiver DeSean Jackson thought that the offense "kind of rushed" the final play.
"We kind of rushed it and we didn't really have to rush it," Jackson said. "We had 40 seconds left or whatever, we could have downed the ball and regrouped and just not rush it. So, I just think that last play was kind of rushed. Just can't do that man."
Vick felt that the offense had the momentum and wanted to seize the opportunity.
"I mean you just got a first down and you want to keep attacking, keep them on their heels and clock it, for what?" Vick said.
It shouldn't come as a surprise that Vick put his trust in the 6-3, 222-pound rookie. When Vick worked with the second-team offense in training camp and the preseason, he and Cooper developed a rapport that carried into the regular season.
-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 10:16 p.m., January 9