After one half at Gillette Stadium, the Philadelphia Eagles and New England Patriots are tied at 14-14. It was a slow start for the Eagles that was marred by an injury to quarterback Michael Vick, who left the game with injured ribs. Vick took a shot to the midsection after dropping back off of playaction. He went to the locker room for X-rays and was replaced by rookie Nick Foles.
After Ryan Mallett and the Pats marched down the field for the first touchdown of the game, Andy Reid went over to his defense for a heated discussion. Things got particularly tense with defensive tackle Cullen Jenkins, who stood up and went nose-to-nose with Reid.
That exchange on the sidelines seemed to wake up the Eagles, who quickly forced two turnovers and promptly converted them for touchdowns. The first came on a muffed punt by New England rookie Brandon Bolden. After a scrum on the bottom of the pile, Akeem Jordan emerged with the ball at the 24 yard line. The Eagles would run it three straight times to cover the final 24 yards and get on the board for the first time. LeSean McCoy kicked it outside and took it in from one yard out for the score to make it 11-7.
Two plays into the subsequent possession, the Eagles defense would force a turnover and give the ball right back to Foles and the offense. This time it was the defensive line pressuring New England quarterback Brian Hoyer. Phillip Hunt got to Hoyer and forced a fumble on just the second play of the possession. Darryl Tapp recovered the loose ball at the 12 yard line.
Foles would waste little time capitalizing on the excellent field position. On the second play of the drive, he rolled to his right and hit tight end Clay Harbor in the corner of the end zone. Harbor tip-toed to get both feet down and controlled the ball to make it 14-11.
It appeared the Patriots would force a turnover of their own on the Eagles' next possession but a replay review overturned a call on the field. Foles hit Brent Celek on a short pass to the right but Patriots linebacker Bobby Carpenter read it the whole way, closing in and making contact with Celek as soon as he turned upfield. Carpenter separated the man from the ball and Trevor Scott was there to scoop it up and scamper 22 yards for what looked like a touchdown. But review determined Celek did not have control of the ball when he was hit by Carpenter, giving the ball back to the Eagles and keeping the score at 14-14.
Foles would commit a turnover on the final possession before the half, trying to force one deep to the goal line with less than 20 seconds on the clock. New England safety Nate Ebner waited on the ball and easily picked it off to end the Eagles threat at the end of the half.