Despite everything that had transpired, or perhaps, for the offense what hadn't transpired, the Eagles were still given a glimmer of hope with just over four minutes remaining in the fourth quarter when Giants long snapper Zak DeOssie sailed his snap high over the head of Giants punter Steve Weatherford.
As the ball rolled and flopped towards the Giants' end zone, Weatherford, with Brandon Boykin in hot pursuit, attempted to kick the ball out of bounds for a safety. But as Weatherford's foot swung around the 2-yard-line, the ball hopped up, eluding Weatherford as Boykin made contact with the helpless punter. Half a second later, linebacker Najee Goode scooped up the ball and fell into the end zone, bringing the Eagles within eight points of the Giants at 15-7.
"Actually I was just going to go hit (Weatherford), just knock the mess out of him and knock the ball into the end zone," said Goode after the game, "but I saw him try to kick it and he missed it with his foot and Boykin did a good job of actually hitting him and knocking him up. Kurt Coleman did a good job of getting penetration so the guys on the punt team had to respect all three of us that came through. When I saw the ball, my eyes got big and I scooped it up."
The touchdown actually marked the second of the season for Goode, if you include the preseason, when he returned an interception for a touchdown while with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
"It was my second," said Goode, "but all of them feel like my first when you're on defense."
On an otherwise dispiriting day, Goode's moment in the spotlight served as a brief moment of a hope.
"It was definitely a momentum changer for us," said linebacker DeMeco Ryans. "When Najee got the turnover and then the touchdown it was a huge play, a huge momentum lift for our team. It felt like it was going to spark us to go ahead and take this game, but we couldn't capitalize on it and finish the game out."
After a failed onsides kick on the ensuing kickoff, the Giants were able to convert one first down before punting the ball to the Eagles with mere seconds remaining on the clock. The final margin would remain 15-7.
"We fight all week to work on our technique and all the things that we have to do on special teams and we got off the ball, the ball rolled our way, I tried to capitalize on it and I did," said Goode. "At that big of a moment in the game, I'm glad I made the play and gave our team a chance to still stay in the game."
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