OAKLAND, California // Chip Kelly walks by a sign commemorating Adrian Burk’s record seven touchdown passes in a single game every day in the Philadelphia Eagles’ offices.
Even knowing the importance of that mark, Kelly saw little reason to allow Nick Foles to try to break it.
Foles tied an NFL mark with seven touchdown passes and threw for 406 yards before being replaced in the fourth quarter in the Eagles’ 49-20 victory over the Oakland Raiders on Sunday.
“I know what the record is,” Kelly said. “But this isn’t about records, it’s about going out and getting a win. If I put Nick out there to try to get a record and he gets hurt, that’s being silly. Records are meant to broken when they’re supposed to be broken.”
The backup quarterback connected three times with Riley Cooper to become the seventh passer in NFL history with seven TD tosses in a game. Peyton Manning did it for Denver on opening night this season against Baltimore.
Foles also threw scoring passes to Brent Celek, Zach Ertz, LeSean McCoy and DeSean Jackson as the Eagles (4-5) looked nothing like the offence that failed to score a touchdown in each of the past two weeks.
The other players to reach the record are Burk, Sid Luckman, George Blanda, YA Tittle and Joe Kapp. Burk did it for the Eagles in 1954 against Washington.
“A couple people came up to me and said that I tied the record with seven touchdowns,” Foles said. “It’s a great honour. Hats off to our guys for doing a great job.”
Foles was coming off a historically ineffective performance two weeks ago against Dallas when he threw for 80 yards on 29 passes – the eighth-lowest total in the last 50 years by an NFL quarterback with that many passes. After sitting out last week with a concussion, Foles looked like a completely different quarterback against the Raiders, throwing scoring passes on his first four drives.
“I slowed everything down,” he said. “I understood what we were trying to do. I wasn’t trying to make too big of plays. Obviously there are going to be times when big plays need to be made, but I was trying to do what I did all week during practice and just carrying that onto the field.”
With the Eagles scoring so quickly, the Raiders managed to run 92 plays and gain 560 yards – the third-most in their history. It was also the ninth-most yards gained by a losing team since the 1970 merger and third most in that span by a team that scored 20 or fewer points. That’s why quarterback Terrelle Pryor saw little positive to take from the performance despite throwing for 288 yards and running for 94 more.
“It’s embarrassing,” Pryor said. “I hate losing. It’s not acceptable to me and I don’t like it. All the guys in here agree with me. We have to do something about it instead of tanking it.”
Raiders rookie cornerback DJ Hayden had a rough day as Foles repeatedly picked on him in coverage. He was beaten by Cooper for a 17-yard touchdown and a 63-yard touchdown on successive plays run by the Eagles early in the second quarter. He also allowed a 59-yard touchdown on a deep pass to DeSean Jackson in the third quarter, making for a forgettable day by the No 12 pick in the draft.
“Nobody’s going to feel sorry for him,” teammate Charles Woodson said. “And one thing about it is he was in position. He was in position to make plays. Those are plays he’s going to have to make going forward.”