Boston Scott’s name is one that will make a lot of people smile today. The Louisiana Tech Product recorded 59 rushing yards, 69 receiving yards, and a touchdown in last night’s win over the New York Giants. An underdog running back who has been around the team since December last year, when he was poached from the Saints practice squad, Scott’s moment in the sun came after one very long night.
The offseason started strongly enough, with Scott quickly being praised as one of the Spring’s big standouts who saw plenty of time as a punt returner. The problem is, even Doug Pederson compared him to Darren Sproles. At 5’6, 203 lbs, he averaged 4.3 yards per carry during his rookie preseason with New Orleans on 25 carries. But it’s Sproles the team wanted.
The Eagles brought the veteran back for one last rodeo during the offseason and despite a strong preseason where he registered 40 yards and a touchdown, Scott was nudged out of a spot on the final roster and sent to practice squad purgatory.
Injuries at the position would eventually see him boosted back up the ranks, but he was unable to really find a footing outside of a few flashes in the pan. The Eagles wanted to ride their prized rookie running back and the thunder and lightning combination featuring Jordan Howard left very few crumbs on the plate for Scott to eat.
But then Monday night happened.
“I did know that he had it in him.” Doug Pederson said after his energized performance. “We saw it in preseason with some of the explosive runs that he had. You just never know sometimes…
..You saw the quickness and the speed. Did a great job. So we’ve just got to find ways to get them all on the field.”
Maybe some time under the radar was exactly what the doctor ordered. At least, it looks as though the presence of one of the best dual-threat backs of all time may have helped his development in more ways than one.
“One thing I’ve watched from Scott is he’s always a hundred miles an hour.” Brandon Brooks told the media after last night’s win. “He learned that from [Eagles RB] Darren Sproles. I can say about Darren Sproles is that there will never be another Darren Sproles, but he tries to hit the middle with as much as he can. When he gets the opportunity he always makes the most of it. I’m not shocked at all that Boston went out there and showed the world what he can do. I’m happy for him. I’m excited for him. Hopefully going forward he gets more touches.”
What really stood out in Scott’s game was the energy. The displays of emotion after a big gain when the Eagles offense was struggling to find any kind of momentum. The relentless effort that seemingly lacked elsewhere on the team for the first half. The ability to play through adversity and take the magnitude of the situation out of the equation. The best things in life can often come from the unlikeliest places, and this performance was no exception.
“He started the year I think on the practice squad and we’ve seen what he’s done in camp, in preseason, but obviously his opportunities have been limited throughout the season.” Quarterback Carson Wentz said. “And tonight, to step up the way he did – running between the tackles, outside the tackles, making plays in the screen game, and in the passing game. I mean, he did a great job and like you said, he was kind of a little spark plug for us there. Just like each guy that I mentioned tonight, I mean those opportunities for them to step up in key situations like this, it’s huge for their confidence going forward.”
The Eagles may have a tricky decision on their hands when Jordan Howard returns from his stinger injury, but that’s a problem to worry about down the line. For now, the second-year running back can soak up the sun and enjoy a win that would just not have been possible without him. Boston Scott may have just saved the Eagles’ season.
Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports