Bad weather brings good vibes for some

Brutally bad weather or bitter cold meant good vibes for lots of NFL players.

The conditions in Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, Pittsburgh and Denver didn’t set back the Eagles, Ravens, Chiefs, Dolphins and Broncos on Sunday.

Most notable were the performances by Eagles star running back LeSean McCoy and Lions kick returner Jeremy Ross in blizzard-like conditions in Philly. McCoy ran for a franchise-best 217 yards, including touchdowns of 57 and 40 yards in a 34-20 victory over Detroit. The Eagles overcame two TD returns by Ross.

“I’ve actually played all of my football in Pennsylvania,” said McCoy, who hails from Harrisburg and went to Pitt. “And this is the worst game that I’ve ever played in weather-wise. It’s my best game, too.”

Also surviving the elements were the defending champion Ravens, 29-26 over Minnesota, which lost 2012 MVP Adrian Peterson to a foot/ankle injury; Kansas City with a 45-10 rout at Washington; Miami in a 34-28 victory at Pittsburgh; and Denver, where Matt Prater broke the NFL record with a 64-yard field goal in a 51-28 romp past Tennessee that earned the Broncos a playoff berth.

Week 14 began with Jacksonville improving to 4-9 by beating Houston 27-20 Thursday night. The Texans (2-11), losers of their last 11, fired coach Gary Kubiak on Friday.

Monday night’s game has Dallas (7-5) at Chicago (6-6).



At Philadelphia, Ross returned a punt 58 yards for a score and ran a kickoff 98 yards at the Linc. But McCoy sprinted 57 yards up the middle for a tying TD, and Nick Foles connected with Riley Cooper on the 2-point conversion. Foles sneaked in from the 1 and Chris Polk had a 38-yard touchdown run to cap a 28-point fourth quarter for the Eagles (8-5).

“To be honest, it was definitely tough,” McCoy said. “You just didn’t have the normal footing and traction that you get when stopping and cutting. Sometimes I couldn’t really plant. I can usually plant on a dime.

“But it all worked out.”

The Eagles won their fifth straight game and took over sole possession of first place. Dallas can make it a tie for the top spot with a victory at Chicago on Monday night.

Snow began falling two hours before kickoff and intensified after the game started. Workers used shovels and hand-held blowers to clear off yard lines. Conditions were so poor neither team tried a field goal, and there were 2-point conversion attempts after seven of the eight TDs.

The Lions (7-6) have a half-game lead over the Bears in the NFC North.

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