NEWARK, N.J. -- Before my flight leaves from Terminal A, I wanted to share a few nuggets that didn't show up in my postgame column following the Eagles' stunning comeback win over the Giants:
A loud cheer went up in the locker room as rookie defensive end Brandon Graham appeared on crutches. He didn't make the trip with the team because he's on injured reserve (knee), but he found a ticket to the game. He was so desperate to celebrate with his teammates that he persuaded a security guard that he was on the team. He started shouting as he entered the locker room and several defensive players raced over to greet him.
Eagles safety Quintin Mikell was being looked at by the medical staff when DeSean Jackson won the game with a 65-yard punt return. Mikell could barely turn his head because of what appeared to be neck pain, but he said he expected play next Sunday against the Minnesota Vikings. When I asked him what coach Andy Reid said at halftime with the Eagles trailing 24-3, he said, "Coach Reid was actually smiling. He kept saying, 'Let's do something great. Let's do something great.'" Mikell was one of several players who said they'd never seen Reid so emotional after a game. Center Mike McGlynn poured a bucket of either Gatorade or water on Reid in the postgame locker room.
Left guard Todd Herremans told me that he felt like Jim Valvano after the game. Everyone remembers the late Valvano racing around the court looking for someone to hug after his North Carolina State team won the national title against Houston. "Nobody was out there to love me," joked Herremans.
Right tackle King Dunlap asked me if he thought the team might win an ESPY award. I told him that I don't have a lot of say in the voting process but that it seems like a possibility.
Eagles cornerback Asante Samuel sat at his locker and said to no one in particular, "Wow, I am still in disbelief."
A quote that tells you a lot about Michael Vick's mindset: "We just said to ourselves, 'Listen, we're just going to go out there and play for pride above anything else. They may beat us 49-25 but we're going to play with pride and we can't complain.' And that's all I want. That's all I want to ask of my teammates, and my offensive line, to play with some pride and enjoy the game."