Super Bowl LII Champions Philadelphia Eagles bring home the Vince Lombardi trophy home to Philadelphia as they are greeted with cheering fans at the airport. Suchat Pederson/The News Journal
Eagles fans from all over came out in the early hours after the Eagles won Super Bowl LII Sunday night to buy up merchandise at Modell's Sporting Goods to remember the historic win.
The scenes from the locker room and interviews MVP Nick Foles and others after Eagles' 41-33 win in the Super Bowl. Martin Frank/The News Journal
Eagles Chris Long is the recipent of the 2018 Byron “Whizzer” White Community MVP Award. Jerry Habraken / The News Journal
News Journal sports reporters Martin Frank and Kevin Tresolini are live with Wilmington native Wendell Smallwood at the Eagles press gathering at the Mall of America. Jerry Habraken/The News Journal
Eagles' Trey Burton tells the media he will be ready if he gets a chance in Super Bowl LII. Jerry Habraken / The News Journal
New England Patriots safety and Caesar Rodney High School graduate Duron Harmon will be playing for his 3rd Super Bowl ring this Sunday. Wochit
Some facts and info about the site of Super Bowl LII, US Bank Stadium. Wochit
News Journal sports reporters Martin Frank and Kevin Tresolini catch up with Caesar Rodney alum Duron Harmon during the Patriots press gathering. Jerry Habraken/The News Journal
Students at The Independence School collected food for the Food Bank of Delaware. Every barrel filled means a one-hour delay on Monday following Super Bowl LII. John J. Jankowski Jr. & Damian Giletto
A quick behind the scenes look at the Philadelphia Eagles press gathering Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2017. Jerry Habraken / The News Journal
The staff at Paul Campanella's Automotive are sharing in the Eagles super bowl fun with messages on their business billboard on Limestone Rd. Jennifer Corbett/The News Journal
News Journal sports reporter Kevin Tresolini speaks with Newark's Ed Klima, who is working his in Minneapolis 13th Super Bowl. Jerry Habraken/The News Journal
Smallwood enjoying time with fans, the Super Bowl experience. Jerry Habraken / The News Journal
News Journal sports reporters Martin Frank and Kevin Tresolini report live from Super Bowl Opening Night in Minneapolis. Jerry Habraken/The News Journal
Eagles head coach was asked Wednesday if Brett Farve will be speaking to the team before the Super Bowl. Jerry Habraken / The News Journal
Halapoulivaati Vaitai has grown into a formidiable replacement after the loss of veteran offensive tackle Jason Peters. Wochit
Dion Lewis, Eric Rowe, and Danny Amendola all spent time in Philadelphia with the Eagles before ending up in New England. Wochit
Veteran offensive tackle Jason Peters is making the most of his sideline time by helping out the younger players. Wochit
Philadelphia Eagles players have their eyes on a Super Bowl LII win despite the opening night extravaganza. Jerry Habraken / The News Journal
Also, Nick Foles on going to the Super Bowl, Zach Ertz on Wentz and Malcolm Jenkins on the defense. Martin Frank/The News Journal
Philadelphia Eagles kicker Jake Elliott is set to break yet another team record in Super Bowl LII. Wochit
The Philadelphia Eagles' Torrey Smith will be looking to win his second Super Bowl ring after his 2012 Super Bowl victory with the Baltimore Ravens. Wochit
Fenwick Island Hardware customers find their Eagles fan items. Jason Minto/The News Journal/USA TODAY
Amazon's Alexa is predicting an Eagles win over the Patriots in Super Bowl LII. 1/24/18 Damian Giletto/The News Journal
- Eagles bring home Super Bowl trophy
- Delaware Eagle fans snap up souvenirs
- Super Bowl champion Eagles’ postgame celebration
- Chris Long: "I'm not the first guy to donate a lot of money to a cause."
- Wendell Smallwood at Eagles press gathering
- Burton knows his role, will be ready if needed
- Harmon finds his strength in religion, makes football easier
- US Bank Stadium: Home of Super Bowl LII
- Caesar Rodney alum Duron Harmon from the Patriots press gathering
- Local food drive with an Eagles twist
- Super Bowl LII Behind the Scenes: Eagles Press Gathering
- Auto repair workers use sign to celebrate Eagles pride
- Newark’s Ed Klima is working his 13th Super Bowl
- Smallwood enjoying time with fans, the Super Bowl experience
- Live from the Super Bowl Opening Night
- Raw Video: Pederson on Brett Farve addressing Eagles before SB LII
- Vaitai becoming a dependable replacement after loss of Peters
- 3 Patriots will be suiting up as ex-Eagles this Sunday
- Jason Peters makes an impact from the sidelines
- Eagles players looking past opening night, ready to play
- Eagles’ Fletcher Cox on facing Tom Brady
- From a chance opportunity, Eagles kicker set to break more records
- Torrey Smith looking for second Super Bowl Ring
- Fenwick Island Hardware customers find their Eagles fan items
- Amazon's Alexa thinks Eagles will win the Super Bowl
MINNEAPOLIS – Maybe it started to sink in about an hour after the game ended, long after the green and white confetti flew, and long after quarterback Nick Foles held his baby daughter on the podium and held the Lombardi Trophy.
After all of that, and the dancing in the locker room, including by Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie, head coach Doug Pederson gathered his players in the locker room, and with a raspy voice told them: "You guys are world champions!"
The players roared and cheered and then they knelt down and prayed.
That's because this championship for the Eagles was 57 years in the making as the unlikeliest of Eagles teams won the Super Bowl, beating the New England Patriots 41-33 on Sunday night.
It's the first time the Eagles have won the Super Bowl in the 52-year history of the game, and their first NFL championship since 1960.
"Just for us, the team all year just fought till the end, just kept leaning on each other," Foles said. "And that's just what this season has been about. That locker room is a special locker room ... No matter what happened, we just kept sticking together, kept leaning on each other."
And that described the Eagles all season, through the season-ending injuries to key players, including quarterback Carson Wentz, which thrust Foles from a backup role into a Super Bowl MVP.
There Foles was, dueling Patriots quarterback Tom Brady throw for throw, yard for yard, touchdown for touchdown.
EAGLES: Defense got the stop it needed
EAGLES: Fans celebrate around Delaware
Still, the Eagles had to hang on for dear life. That is, until defensive end Brandon Graham barreled in from the left side, wrapped up Brady and forced a fumble that rookie Derek Barnett recovered at the New England 31 with 2:09 remaining.
From there, it was just a matter of time until the final minutes rolled off the clock, followed by euphoria among the multitudes of Eagles fans at U.S. Bank Stadium.
It was something Eagles wide receiver Alshon Jeffery guaranteed in the days leading up to the game.
"Ain't nobody stopping us, man," Jeffery said. "Ain't no matter who we're playing. I just believe in us. We're a team, man. We really got a brotherhood no matter what. It doesn't matter who's at quarterback, who's at receiver ... we believe in each other. That's all that matters.
"I ain't never been a part of a team like this. This team right here is something special."
The Eagles proved it.
The two teams set a record for total yards in a game, combining for 1,151 yards. The record was broken by the end of the third quarter. Brady threw for 505 yards, breaking a Super Bowl record for passing yards that he set last year.
Foles, who completed 28 of 43 passes for 373 yards and three touchdowns, put the Eagles in front with his 11-yard TD pass to tight end Zach Ertz with 2:21 remaining. That came seven minutes after Brady gave the Patriots their first lead of the game, at 33-32 with 9:22 remaining.
What a ride for the Eagles and their fans. Foles was the backup quarterback as recently as two months ago, when Wentz tore his ACL in a win over the Los Angeles Rams.
Foles had contemplated retirement after a dreadful 2015 season with the Rams, then based in St. Louls.
Here he is now, a Super Bowl MVP for a team about to host a parade in Philadelphia.
"There was a time where I was thinking about hanging up the cleats," Foles said. "I think as people, we deal with struggles ... I'm grateful that I made the decision to come back and play."
So are the Eagles and their fans.
And the vast majority of the fans at U.S. Bank Stadium, most paying at least a few thousand dollars for tickets, celebrated all of it, as did fans watching in bars and restaurants and at home around Delaware.
The fans were loud long before the game even started. And they kept it going throughout the game, as the fight song "Fly Eagles Fly" was heard loud and clear every time the Eagles scored.
But Foles wasn't the only star of this game for the Eagles. There was Jeffery with his 34-yard touchdown pass in the back of the end zone.
"A hell of a catch," as Jeffery described it.
There was rookie running back Corey Clement, an undrafted free agent, catching four passes for 100 yards, including a 22-yard TD in the third quarter to give the Eagles a 29-19 lead.
He grew up an Eagles fan in Glassboro, New Jersey.
"We were counted out all season," Clement said. "I knew the Philadelphia fan base had our backs. We just had to believe in ourselves."
It was the most unlikely of circumstances. The Eagles were coming off a 7-9 season with an unproven quarterback in Wentz. Then they lost five key players, including Wentz, to season-ending injuries throughout the course of the season.
Still, they kept winning.
The Patriots, on the other hand, were going for their sixth Super Bowl in the Brady-Bill Belichick era that has spanned the last 18 seasons. That included a win over the Eagles in Philadelphia's last Super Bowl appearance 13 years ago.
This time, the Eagles, under a second-year head coach in Doug Pederson, had an answer for everything.
It was clear from the start that this was going to be an offensive showcase. There was one punt in the entire game.
The Eagles took the opening kickoff and methodically drove down the field, getting to the Patriots 2 yard line before settling for a field goal. The Patriots responded with a field goal of their own after Jalen Mills broke up a pass in the end zone intended for tight end Rob Gronkowski.
The Eagles responded quickly on LeGarrette Blount's 35-yard run, followed by Foles' 34-yard pass to Jeffery in the back of the end zone as he out leaped former Eagle Eric Rowe to come down with the pass.
The Patriots were poised to cut into the lead, but a botched snap on a field-goal attempt led to a miss. And the Eagles came right back and made it 15-3 on Blount's 21-yard touchdown run.
Then Delaware native and Caesar Rodney graduate Duron Harmon made a play for the Patriots. He intercepted Foles at the 10 yard line catching the deflection off of Jeffery. That set up a 90-yard drive that culminated in James White's 26-yard run.
Just like that, the Pats were within three points with 2:04 left in the first half.
That's when Foles had perhaps his finest moment as an athlete. A 55-yard catch and run by Corey Clement, the Glassboro, New Jersey resident, got the Eagles inside the Patriots' 10 with about a minute left in the half.
Facing a 4th-and-goal from the 1, Clement lined up behind center, took the snap, flipped the ball to Trey Burton, who then threw to Foles in the end zone. It was a fitting play on several fronts.
For one, Brady dropped a pass earlier when he was wide open along the sideline. Secondly, Burton is a former quarterback at the University of Florida. And it was Foles' first reception of his career, regular season or postseason.
Pederson said the play was called "Philly Special."
It was a fitting name to a game and an Eagles' season that was all of that and more.
Contact Martin Frank at email@example.com. Follow on Twitter @Mfranknfl.