Advertisement

 PHILADELPHIA (AP) -With nothing between him and the goal line in the closing minutes of Sunday's win over Dallas, the only thing that could stop Brian Westbrook was the bellowing of teammate Jon Runyan.
The Eagles were clinging to a 10-6 lead over their hated rivals with just over two minutes left when Westbrook broke through the line and into the open field. But rather than scoring the touchdown that could have put an emphatic end to a big upset, Westbrook stopped at the 1-yard line and went to the ground, allowing the Eagles to run out the clock on the Cowboys.
All because he could hear his right tackle's earlier advice in his mind and urgent orders in his ear.
``I got a stern talking-to by Runyan right before that play,'' Westbrook said after the game. ``He said, 'Listen, if you're down to the 1, take a knee.'''
Westbrook didn't know if it was a good idea, but Runyan did.
``He was like, 'Take a knee, Westbrook, take a knee.' ``
Runyan was so sure it would be better for the Eagles to run out the clock rather than score and risk a freak comeback, he pursued his running back downfield on the play, yelling the whole time.
``I looked back and I saw all 6-7 or 6-8 of him running toward me saying, 'Get down,''' Westbrook said.
``So, I got down.''
Eagles coach Andy Reid credited Westbrook's Villanova education for the decision to stop short of the goal line, but at least some credit should go to - in the words of Bo Schembechler - a Michigan Man.
``They were going to let us score to get the ball back, so I suggested this because then they won't get it back,'' Runyan said. ``In a crazy game like this, you never know, you are a long kickoff return or a crazy play and an onside kick away from possibly losing the game.''
Reid admitted Monday that Runyan is ``a smart guy,'' but said he was more impressed that Westbrook - who isn't really programmed to throttle down in the open field - was able to listen to his tackle's advice.
``Whether Jon Runyan was making the call or not, for a running back to execute it and understand what's being said when you're going in for a touchdown is something else,'' Reid said.
``Sometimes it's hard to get a guard and a tackle to communicate, let alone a running back who's 15 yards down the field to listen to his offensive tackle.''
Reid said he hopes Westbrook's unselfishness is rewarded Tuesday when the results of the Pro Bowl voting are announced.
``I have a hard time believing anybody is doing it better than he's doing it right now at the running back position,'' Reid said. ``He blocks, he catches, he runs. ... He's a valuable guy in a lot of areas. And he's not just OK in those areas, he's special in those areas.''
Westbrook leads the league in yards from scrimmage with 1,896 yards and is tied for second in the NFC with 12 touchdowns. If not for his offensive tackle, he would have one more.

Recent NFL Discussions

Advertisement

NFL Top Stories

Thumbnail Redskins 2016 Win Total Pick   After being the surprise winner of the NFC East in 2015, can the Washington Redskins find a way to have another big season in...
Thumbnail Bills Season Win Total Prediction Rex Ryan blew into Orchard Park last January with his patented bravado dialed up to 11, but all the swagger in the world couldn’t mask another disappointing...
Thumbnail Chicago Bears Win Total Picks The Chicago Bears find themselves in a competitive NFC North Division. Can they navigate the waters in 2016 to have a winning...
Thumbnail Rams Season Win Total Prediction Amid all the hullaballoo surrounding their move (back) to Los Angeles, the Rams actually lost some fairly significant pieces on the personnel side. Will a new man...
Thumbnail Dolphins Season Win Total Prediction With a new head coach and several fresh faces, will the Miami Dolphins win over or under 7 games in 2016?
More inNFL Articles  

NFL Team Pages