The Washington Commanders started Thanksgiving early this year as they feasted on birds at Lincoln Financial Field on Monday Night Football. Washington's 32-21 victory on the night gave the Philadelphia Eagles their first loss of the season, and Terry McLaurin, Joey Slye and Darrick Forrest impressed in the dominating win.
The Commanders' No. 17 just loves an Eagles game. McLaurin maximized his chemistry with Taylor Heinicke on the night as he pulled down Washington's two longest catches, asserted himself over the Eagles cornerback Darius Slay and consistently put his team in dangerous positions. He finished the game with eight catches for 128 yards, the most he has had in a single game since Week 15 of the 2019 season. The performance also gave him his third 100-yard receiving game this season and fourth 100-yard receiving game in his nine total games against Philadelphia.
McLaurin's MNF outing was the entrée to the appetizer he delivered the Eagles the first time the two teams met in Week 3. In that contest, he recorded 102 receiving yards. He is the only wide receiver to compile 80-plus receiving yards against the Eagles this season. Zooming out, McLaurin showed yet again why he is becoming one of the best in his position to wear the burgundy and gold. He now has 13 100-yard receiving games over his career, which ties Gary Clark for the most through 56 games in franchise history.
It would not be hard to make the case that without Slye's coolness under pressure, the Commanders would not have walked away with a win. The kicker was 4-of-4 in what will likely go down as the best game of his career. He made a 44-yarder, 58-yarder, 32-yarder and 55-yarder to chomp into Philly's first half advantage and eventually help give Washington the lead.
His 58-yard score to put a stamp on the first half was the longest of Slye's career and the longest made field goal by a Washington kicker since 2011. It was also the longest made field goal against the Eagles all-time by a Washington kicker. Slye's confidence and ability to rise to the moment was infectious as the Commanders offense had one of its best performances in recent memory.
Talk about a second-year leap. Last season as a rookie, Forrest played just 26 defensive snaps. This season, he leads the team in takeaways. Two of those came tonight in a special performance by the Commanders' defense which forced Philadelphia to turn the ball over more times in this contest (four) than it had in all eight of its previous games combined.
With the Eagles up by four in the second quarter, Forrest did well to stay with A.J. Brown on an attempted pass attempt deep into Commanders territory and scooped the ball mid-air for the second interception of his career. The pick was Hurts' first interception since Week 4.
Then, in the fourth quarter, the safety came up huge again. The Eagles were trailing by five, and the struggling, Hurts-led offense was eager to get a comeback rolling. It looked as if Philadelphia had executed a much-needed big play downfield when the Eagles' Quez Watkins connected on a 50-yard pass from Hurts. But Benjamin St-Juste did not give up on the play, and when Watkins got up to keep running, the Commanders safety popped the ball out of the wide receiver's hands. Forrest then jumped on top of it to ensure Washington re-gained possession and deflated the Eagles just a little bit more as the clock ran down on the home team's fairytale season start.