SAN FRANCISCO - All week long quarterback Kevin Kolb preached that the most important thing was winning Sunday night's game against the 49ers. It was a battle in every sense of the word as the Eagles overcame a tough start, a slew of injuries and a late rally for a 27-24 win.
"We were so focused on winning this football game, nothing else mattered," Kolb said. "I tried to reiterate that through the week. It didn't matter about my play. It didn't matter about LeSean playing banged up, defense, whatever it was, we were going to come in here and try to win. That's what you're most proud of whevever that happens."
Kolb stepped out on the field with his team already down 7-0. Kolb and the Eagles answered back with a brilliant 10-play, 75-yard drive capped off with an 8-yard touchdown strike to tight end Brent Celek. On that drive, Kolb displayed his arm strength on a rollout to the right where he threw the ball across the field to Celek for a 32-yard gain. The Eagles had scored on a 3-yard touchdown run by LeSean McCoy, but the play was negated by a Todd Herremans holding penalty.
On the scoring play, Kolb was flushed out of the pocket as Celek lost his blocking assignment. Kolb broke tackle attempts from Manny Lawson and Ray McDonald before delivering the ball to Celek near the goal line. Celek outmuscled strong safety Taylor Mays into get into the end zone.
"When they went down and scored, we had to go match. That was our mentality," Kolb said. "The way it happened, We had to make some things happen and guys did that across the board all night. That's what we wanted to do. We just said, 'Guys, just go play football and that's what we were able to do.'"
Kolb finished the game 21 of 31 for 253 yards with a touchdown and a QB rating of 103.3. Head coach Andy Reid said after the game that Kolb did a lot of extra work to be ready for Sunday's game, his second start of the season. And that preparation showed in the way he was able to lead them down the field.
"I was very confident. That's what you have to be as a quarterback. Their backs were against the wall. We knew they were going to bring a lot of intensity," Kolb said. "We saw what they had done in the past when they had that kind of energy. Andy told us to play emotional football. Guys were more determined and we knew we had to have this one. We came in here with that mentality; treated it like a business trip all the way here to the West Coast and we're glad to go back with the victory."
While his touchdown came on the opening drive, Kolb continued to make the big plays necessary to set the Eagles up for other scores. In the second half, Kolb connected twice with wide receiver Jeremy Maclin on deep passes. Kolb hit Maclin for a 41-yard gain on the opening drive of the second half. On the first play of the drive that eventually became the game-winner, it was a 22-yard connection between Kolb and Maclin that helped set up the score.
Even though the 49ers made it a close game late, Kolb and the Eagles found a way to win.
"Across the board, everyone did a good job matching their intensity and finishing up there in the fourth quarter," Kolb said.
-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 1:55 a.m., October 11