East Rutherford, NJ – The New York Giants, while simultaneously being denied a chance to defend their Super Bowl title, delivered a resounding victory Sunday in what may have been Andy Reid's last game on the Philadelphia Eagles' sideline.
Eli Manning threw a career-high five touchdowns passes despite windy conditions in leading the Giants to a 42-7 blowout win in what proved to be both teams' season finale.
New York (9-7), the front-runner in the NFC East for most of the season, was eliminated from postseason contention when the Chicago Bears upended the Detroit Lions on Sunday afternoon. A 2-5 stretch coming into Week 17 proved too much for the reigning champions to overcome, though a pair of rookies showed promise heading into next season.
Rueben Randle caught two TD passes, while fellow rookie David Wilson caught another from Manning, who finished with 208 yards on 13-of-21 passes.
"It hurts. Each year you want to make the playoffs to give yourself an opportunity to win a championship," Manning said of the early offseason. "I'm disappointed we didn't play up to our abilities each week."
Ahmad Bradshaw gained 148 yards from scrimmage and ran for a touchdown in finishing off the Eagles' 4-12 campaign -- the worst in Reid's 14-year tenure in the City of Brotherly Love.
Michael Vick, in his first start since suffering a concussion against the Cowboys in Week 10, completed just 19-of-35 attempts for 197 yards with a touchdown and an interception in the loss.
The Eagles can opt out of Vick's hefty contract in the offseason, leading many to speculate his days, like Reid's, are numbered in Philadelphia.
"I'll meet with (owner) Jeffrey (Lurie) tomorrow and we'll talk," Reid said of his future after the tumultuous season ended. "I've loved the Philadelphia Eagles. I've loved every minute I've had the chance to coach them. ... There will be better days ahead."
The Giants, losers of five straight at home and seven of eight overall against their division rivals, dominated from start to finish on Sunday.
A surprise onside kick on the opening kickoff was recovered by Philadelphia, but the momentum lasted all of five plays when Vick's intended pass for Brent Celek sailed high and into the arms of Giants safety Stevie Brown, who returned the interception 48 yards to the Philadelphia 26.
After three runs by Wilson gained 23 yards, Manning hit Randle off a play- action fake for an early 7-0 lead.
Randle, a second-round pick out of LSU who had one touchdown catch coming in, got in his second of the day just four minutes after his first when he beat Nnamdi Asomugha down the left sideline and hauled in Manning's 38-yard bomb.
Following another quick punt by Philadelphia, Bradshaw picked up 41 yards off a wheel route before Manning hooked up with Wilson for a 15-yard TD and a 21-0 lead with 1:18 still to go in the opening quarter. New York had scored a combined 14 points in losses at Atlanta and Baltimore coming into the game.
Philadelphia converted a pair of fourth-down chances early in the second, including a 4th-and-1 try from the New York 7-yard line when Vick hit Jeremy Maclin for the team's only touchdown.
New York responded with another TD to cap a 10-play, 73-yard drive. A pass interference penalty in the end zone on Asomugha set up Bradshaw's 1-yard score with 6:26 remaining in the half.
On the ensuing Eagles possession, Alex Henery missed wildly to the left on a 28-yard field goal attempt. It was the first time the second-year kicker missed from inside 30 yards in 18 career chances.
New York forced a turnover on downs near midfield with 17 seconds left in the half, leaving enough time to add to its already comfortable cushion. Manning first hit Domenik Hixon for 30 yards, and Victor Cruz got behind the secondary on the next play for a 24-yard score and a healthy 35-7 advantage at halftime.
A 14-play, 88-yard drive that spanned the third and fourth quarter and ate up nearly 10 minutes put the finishing touches on the laugher. Midway through the final frame, Manning set his personal best by rolling to his right and finding Henry Hynoski at the pylon for the fullback's first career score.
Despite setting a personal mark, Manning fell 52 yards shy of his fourth straight 4,000-yard passing season ... Bradshaw ran for 107 yards and 16 carries to accomplish the second 1,000-yard season in his career ... Brown finished the season with eight interceptions, one behind league-leader Tim Jennings of Chicago ... Giants wide receiver Hakeem Nicks was active despite being questionable with a knee injury, but did not record a catch ... LeSean McCoy gained 106 yards from scrimmage for the Eagles ... Under Reid, the Eagles are 130-93-1 (.583) and have reached the postseason nine times.