After stifling him all game, Eagles had no answer in OT for Dak Prescott

After stifling him all game, Eagles had no answer in OT for Dak Prescott

ARLINGTON, Texas — Dak Prescott didn't complete more than two consecutive passes at any point in regulation Sunday night.

In overtime, he couldn't miss. 

Prescott, 14-for-34 through four quarters, torched the Eagles' defense in overtime, completing all five of his passes for 56 yards and the game-winning five-yard touchdown pass to Jason Witten that gave the Cowboys a 29-23 walk-off win at AT&T Stadium.

Overtime was a nightmare for the Eagles, who watched the Cowboys drive 75 yards in 12 plays to complete a comeback from 10 points down early in the fourth quarter.

“Obviously disappointing for the defense, because that’s the position we want to be in,” Jordan Hicks said. “That’s the position you hope to be in at the end of the game.

“Defense on the field, going out there, holding them, keeping them out of the end zone. That’s exactly where we want to be, and we just came up short.”

A year ago, the Eagles beat the Cowboys in overtime in the same stadium on Jordan Matthews’ 41-yard touchdown catch from Sam Bradford.

In that game, Sam Bradford was 5-for-5 for 56 yards and a touchdown, and the Cowboys never got on the field.

This time, Prescott duplicated Bradford's numbers, and the Eagles never got on the field.

It's the first time the Eagles have gone into overtime and never run an offensive play since a 1999 loss to the Redskins in Landover.

On the Cowboys’ overtime drive, the Eagles’ defense — so sharp much of the game — just had no answers for Presecott.

Prescott connected with Cole Beasley on a 24-yard gain down to the Eagles’ 37, he gained two yards on a 4th-and-1 keeper at the Eagles’ 28, he connected with Ezekiel Elliott for 10 yards down to the 4, then threw the Eagles’ defense off with a spin move on the final play of the game before finding Witten wide open in the end zone.

“He just improvised,” Nolan Carroll said. “Especially on the last play. Just scrambled and found the open guy.”

Prescott with 6½ minutes left in the fourth quarter was 9-for-26 for 152 yards, with no TD passes and one interception.

He was 10-for-13 for 134 yards with two TDs and no interceptions in the final 13½ minutes.

“Everybody in the league knows that Dak can scramble and he extends plays with his legs and gets guys open and there’s nothing else to really say about it,” Jalen Mills said.

“Very frustrating. We pride ourselves on playing great football as a defense, and we just didn’t make the plays we had to make at the end.”

The Cowboys scored the last 16 points of the game and beat the Eagles in overtime for the first time ever.

“It was 0-0 when we got the ball,” Prescott said after his first career overtime game. “We’ve been great in the first few games of getting the ball first and scoring. That’s kind of how I took it and thought of it. We got the ball and needed a touchdown.”

The Eagles got the Cowboys in only one third down on the game-winning drive — and they stopped them. But the fourth-down conversion was lethal.

Cowboys coach Jason Garrett could have sent out Dan Bailey, the most accurate kicker in NFL history, for a 45-yard field goal, but went for the kill instead.

It was the first fourth-down attempt against the Eagles in 34 overtime games in franchise history.
 
“He was asking if we should kick it,” Prescott said. “I was going back and forth with Coach on what to do. I said ‘I’ve got those big guys in front of me, we can get that yard,’ and that’s exactly what we did. They made some space for me to get that yard.” 

The Eagles had so many chances to put this game away, but it was all Dallas in overtime.

“It just wasn’t good enough,” Connor Barwin said. “We needed to come up with a play here, a play there, to at least hold them to a field goal and give our offense a chance.”

Going into Sunday, the Eagles were the stingiest second-half defense in the NFL, allowing only 19 points after halftime.

In Dallas, they allowed 16 in the final 13½ minutes.

“For them to be able to drive down the field on us, that was very uncharacteristic of us and the way we play defense,” Nigel Bradham said. “They don’t score, we win. That was our mindset. We did some good things, but a disappointing way to finish.”

Eagles pick up compensatory fourth-round pick from Browns

Eagles pick up compensatory fourth-round pick from Browns

The NFL announced the list of compensatory picks for the 2017 draft and the Eagles weren't awarded any.

They're still going to get one, though. 

Thanks to the trade with the Browns to move up to No. 2 in last year's draft, the Eagles got back a conditional fifth-round pick that has now turned into a fourth. 

Basically, if the Browns received a fourth-round compensatory pick, the Eagles would get it. The Browns were awarded two (Nos. 139 and 142), so the Eagles get one. According to a league source, the Eagles will get No. 139 overall, the higher of the two.  

This is the first year teams are allowed to trade compensatory picks. The Bengals, Browns, Broncos and Chiefs were each awarded four compensatory picks. The highest compensatory pick awarded this year belongs to Miami at No. 97 in the third round. 

The Eagles still don't know where they'll pick in the first round -- either No. 14 or 15. That will be determined by a coin flip next week at the combine in Indianapolis. They have eight draft picks in total.

Eagles wise to bring Jason Peters back, even with full salary

Eagles wise to bring Jason Peters back, even with full salary

This isn't a big surprise, but Jason Peters will be back with the Eagles -- big salary and all -- for the 2017 season.

While the Eagles approached the veteran left tackle about his contract in January, Peters has not restructured his deal, according to a league source. 

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport on Thursday morning reported that Peters will be back next season on his normal contract. 

Yes, Peters is expensive in 2017. His base salary after hitting another Pro Bowl escalator written into his contract is up to $10.45 million for next season (plus a $250K workout bonus), which comes with a big cap hit of $11.7 million. That cap hit is the highest on the team, but not outlandish for a high-caliber left tackle. 

The Eagles could have very well cut Peters and moved on. It would have saved them significant cap space to use elsewhere. They just wouldn't have found any player more valuable to pay with that money. 

Peters, 35, is still their best option to protect Carson Wentz's blind side. He made his ninth Pro Bowl in 2016 after playing all 16 games. The team hasn't been shy about wanting him back and Peters toward the end of the season said he wanted to return for another year. 

"We certainly want to have him back," Eagles vice president of football operations Howie Roseman said of Peters in early January.

“I love him. I want him on the team,” head coach Doug Pederson said with two games remaining this past season. “I don’t want him to go anywhere."

With Peters back, it means Lane Johnson's eventual trip to left tackle will be held off for another year. Eventually, he'll take over that spot … just not right now. 

During the season, Peters opened up about his future, saying he hopes Wentz can be the guy who finally gets him a Super Bowl ring (see story).