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Cunningham Can't Keep Up With McNabb

November 06, 2000|From Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA — Donovan McNabb beat Randall Cunningham at his own game and in his old backyard.

McNabb threw for 228 yards and ran for 58 more, and David Akers kicked a 32-yard field goal with 7:05 left in overtime Sunday as the Philadelphia Eagles defeated the Dallas Cowboys, 16-13.

Cunningham, playing his first game in Philadelphia since his 11-year career with the Eagles ended in 1995, completed 14 of 22 passes for only 109 yards. He ran nine times for 22 yards.

"He's a guy I idolized and watched throughout his career," McNabb said. "I tried to assimilate my game after him. I sort of want to be on the same page he was on."

Philadelphia (6-4), which defeated Dallas, 41-14, in the season opener, swept the series for the first time since 1990.

Dallas (3-6) took a 13-10 lead on a 27-yard field goal by Tim Seder with 1:51 left. A 46-yard pass interference penalty on Troy Vincent set it up.

But McNabb drove the Eagles 54 yards in 96 seconds, and Akers' 34-yard field goal tied the game at 13-13 with 11 seconds left.

McNabb accounted for all of the yards on the drive, including a 19-yard run. He had runs of 17 and 23 yards in the fourth-quarter drive that led to the game-tying touchdown.

"I had double vision watching him in the third and fourth quarter," Cunningham said. "I saw him running and making plays, and I said, 'Wow, he's a very talented kid.' I remember back when I was his age making plays here like that."

After Dallas linebacker Barron Wortham intercepted McNabb on the opening possession of overtime, the Eagles got the ball back at their 48 on a fumble by Robert Thomas.

Darnell Autry ran five yards, and McNabb completed three passes in a row, including a 22-yarder to Autry, setting up Akers' game-winner.

Autry had 65 yards in 19 carries and caught three passes for 57 yards, including a 23-yarder for a touchdown that tied it at 10-10. He did not get a carry in a 24-7 loss to the New York Giants last week.

Emmitt Smith ran for 134 yards and a touchdown, but the Cowboys lost in overtime for the second consecutive week.

"We need to try and eliminate a lot of mistakes we make, and until we do that, we're going to be a very mediocre team," Smith said.

Cunningham, whose tenure in Philadelphia was marked by bitter disappointment and playoff failures, received a mixture of boos and cheers during his pregame introduction.

Cunningham, starting in place of the injured Troy Aikman, didn't nearly resemble the same player who led the Eagles to three playoff appearances in a row a decade ago.

He threw an interception to Brian Dawkins in the end zone, killing a long drive in the second quarter.

"I wasn't surprised to be booed," Cunningham said.

The Cowboys took a 7-0 lead on a seven-yard run by Smith with 4:42 left in the first quarter. The play capped an 11-play, 40-yard drive that lasted more than six minutes.

The Eagles trailed, 10-0, before Akers made a 34-yard field goal early in the fourth quarter.

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