Philadelphia Eagles star receiver AJ Brown went viral at the end of Saturday night’s game for all the wrong reasons. It seemed to be him strangely pouting and sat alone on the touchline at 5-11 in the fourth quarter while his team led the New York Giants 31-7.
Head coach Nick Sirianni was seen walking up to Brown and patting his head reassuringly. The game was over at this point. No drama needed, right? Definitely not. And the internet was on a mission to find out what the Pro Bowler could possibly be upset about when a ticket to the NFC Championship Game gets punched.
Brown didn’t address the incident immediately after the game, but logic dictated that he was mad at himself for putting on an overwhelming performance. He was tackled only six times against New York and only made 3 catches for 22 yards.
FOX Sports cameras later caught him mouth the words “I’m doing well.” Brown was seen turning up limp at one of his receptions, so he could have been referring to what appeared to be a leg or hip injury. Anyway, no evil is brewing in the Philly locker room as they gear up for the San Francisco 49ers.
After Jeff McLane from the Inquirer, Brown felt fine on Sunday despite being “dented in the leg and hip area.” He is not expected to have any restrictions for next week’s NFC Championship game.
Back to Brown’s tantrum on the sidelines for a second. Let’s ease him and the entire receiving corps a bit after being underutilized in the NFC divisional round. The Eagles took a 28-0 lead at half-time and put the passing game on hold. They ran it 44 times for 268 yards, with Kenneth Gainwell, Boston Scott and Jalen Hurts all hitting the ground. Gainwell broke out for a Career-high 112 yards on his best day he wore a midnight green jersey.
Starter Miles Sanders added 90 yards on 17 carries, then revealed what went right in the ground game.
“Just a mentality,” Sanders said after the game. “If we know we’re going to get a chance to run the ball, that [offensive line] and when we walk back, we take it upon ourselves to just make a statement every time.
Veteran defensive end Brandon Graham will play in his second NFC Championship Game. The Eagles were No. 1 throughout the 2017 Super Bowl run and led the table. Now that Graham is the heart and soul of the team on defense, the franchise is preparing to host another. Can recent history repeat itself?
“I don’t take that for granted because every year is different,” Graham said. “Some people never get to that position so I know for me I just take it all in because you just have to have an out of this world focus because so many people, especially the number 1, everyone wants to beat you. Everyone is talking about you.
“You have to block out the noise. You have to focus on what’s at hand, and that means winning the next one. That’s our turn now. We’re enjoying this win and we’re already on to the next because we’re getting closer to our dreams now.”