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Eagles Hang On, Top Giants In Finale

There were no postseason ramifications, but the Eagles entered Week 17 ready to play and emerged victorious, closing the 2014 season with a 34-26 win over the Giants on Sunday afternoon.

The Eagles' offense found success on the ground all afternoon as the Birds piled up 429 yards of total offense. Running back LeSean McCoy ran 17 times for 99 yards, and running back Chris Polk punched in his fourth rushing touchdown of the season early in the fourth quarter.

Quarterback Mark Sanchez tacked on 292 yards of his own, as well as a pair of touchdowns, and wide receiver Jordan Matthews caught eight passes for 105 yards and a touchdown.

The first quarter began with a bang in the scoring department as the Giants marched down the field on a six-play, 80-yard drive in just under three minutes and scored on a 1-yard run from running back Andre Williams.

On the ensuing drive, the Eagles responded with a high-octane series of their own, flying 80 yards in three plays. Sanchez found Matthews on a short completion, and the rookie took the pass 44 yards for a score, a sign of things to come on a prolific afternoon for the young wideout.

After forcing a Giants punt, the Eagles came back with another scoring possession, this one a little longer in elapsed time but equally effective. The offense marched 75 yards in two and a half minutes, capitalizing on a pass interference penalty, and Sanchez found tight end Brent Celek in the end zone for the quarterback's second touchdown pass of the first quarter.

New York answered with a field goal on its next drive to pull within four points, and from there the teams went 10 minutes without scoring again. The Giants finally snapped the scoreless streak, booting a 20-yard field goal with 7:26 to play in the first half. They hit another one with 2:02 to play, a field goal which the Eagles answered with one of their own as the half ended to enter halftime with a 17-16 lead.

And then the Eagles' special teams unit made its presence felt.

Long a star of this team's season, the Eagles' special teams unit blocked a Giants punt just two minutes and 26 seconds into the second half and tight end Trey Burton returned it for a touchdown. The score gave the Eagles a 24-16 lead, and on the ensuing New York possession the Eagles defense forced yet another punt.

Two drives later, the Giants kicked their fourth field goal of the game, a 53-yard strike that cut the Eagles' lead to five points with just under 20 minutes left to play on the afternoon.

After trading punts before entering the fourth quarter, the Eagles started the final period of the season with an eight-play, 65-yard drive that culminated in Polk's touchdown scurry.

The Eagles took a 31-19 lead with 13 minutes to play on the touchdown run, but it lasted just 81 seconds of game time as Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. caught a 63-yard touchdown bomb from Eli Manning to cut the gap back to five points, 31-26. Beckham finished with 12 catches for 185 yards and a touchdown on the afternoon.

But the Eagles simply couldn't be stopped. More special teams came, this time a 49-yard field goal from Cody Parkey, the franchise's new single-season points record holder. The three points gave the Eagles an eight-point lead with eight minutes to play on the afternoon.

And the Giants kept threatening as the clock wound down, but safety Nate Allen notched his fourth interception of the Eagles' last eight games with just under three minutes to play to seal the deal.

The Eagles conclude the 2014 season at MetLife Stadium against the New York Giants with an eye on reaching 10 wins for the second straight season ...

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