The Eagles and Cowboys played a scoreless first quarter in the rain at Lincoln Financial Field as most of the Birds starters watched from the sidelines. Jeremy Maclin was the only skill position starter on offense to see playing time, as Michael Vick, LeSean McCoy and DeSean Jackson were all inactive. Philadelphia is locked in to the No. 3 seed in the NFC playoffs, so the outcome of this game will not affect the Birds.
Dallas seemed to be moving the ball effectively on its first drive as Stephen McGee hit Miles Austin for a 31-yard gain on 3rd and 13 from the Dallas 31, but the Cowboys eventually stalled out at the Eagles’ 40-yardline. The Birds took over at their own 20 after a touchback, but had to punt after moving the ball towards midfield. The Cowboys answered with a short drive and a punt of their own.
Philadelphia went three-and-out, gaining just one yard on a quick pass from Kevin Kolb to Jerome Harrison on third-and-4. Dallas matched with a three-and-out of its own, as McGee was under heavy pressure, taking an intentional grounding penalty on third down after a blitz from Colt Anderson came clean.
The Eagles got good field position as a result, and Kolb hit Jason Avant for a 21-yard gain down to the Cowboys’ 18-yardline. A few plays later Kolb connected with Chad Hall to move the ball down to the 6-yardline. Hall then ran it down to the 4-yardline, and the Eagles will have second-and-goal from the Dallas 4 to start the second quarter.